Abstract # 13436 Poster # 88:

Scheduled for Thursday, August 22, 2019 06:00 PM-08:00 PM: (Alumni Lounge) Poster Presentation


THE EFFECTIVENESS OF OLFACTORY STIMULATION AS A FORM OF SENSORY ENRICHMENT FOR RHESUS MACAQUES (MACACCA MULATTA).

P. J. Pierre, M. Gambucci and S. Hoker
Wisconson National Primate Research Center, 1220 Capital Ct, Madison, WI 27157, USA
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     Enrichment is a vital component of laboratory-housed animal husbandry that increases wellbeing by facilitating the expression of species-specific behavior. Complex captive environments are created through the provision of several “domains” of enrichment. The purpose of this study is to gain a better understanding of the role that olfactory stimulation plays in the environmental enrichment of nonhuman primates. Fifteen adult rhesus macaques were participants in this study. Two familiar scents were delivered to each animal in a randomized order and each scent was delivered for 5 sessions. Session began by hanging two PVC “snifters”, one loaded with scented shampoo and one empty on the cage. Sessions were video recorded for 40 minutes. The position and order of each scent presentation was randomized across subjects. Finally, a direct comparison between the two scents was evaluated in a head-to-head preference assessment (3 sessions). We found that monkeys preferred scented to unscented snifters; however, individuals showed unique scent preferences. In terms of engaged use, monkeys spent 10 minutes of the session in direct interaction with the snifters on average. Together, these data suggest the effectiveness of scent as an enrichment strategy is modulated by individual preference and consideration should be made concerning how scent is broadcast to groups. Finally, total interaction suggests scent may not be as effective in engaging the animals as other forms of enrichment or enhancement.