Abstract # 2897 Event # 4:

Scheduled for Thursday, June 17, 2010 09:30 AM-09:40 AM: Session 2 (Medallion Ballroom A) Oral Presentation


RETROSPECTIVE ASSESSMENT OF PAIR FORMATION IN LABORATORY RHESUS MACAQUES: REFINING PARTNER SELECTION

K. C. Baker
Tulane National Primate Research Center, 18703 Three Rivers Rd., Covington, LA 70433, USA
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Isosexual pairings of caged adult rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta) at the Tulane National Primate Research Center are documented in detail. Data deriving from 186 introductions were used to explore variables that may be considered when selecting singly housed individuals to introduce. First, potential partners may be housed in cages facing one another and have long-term visual access prior to introduction. While this condition is sometimes considered advantageous, there was a trend toward a smaller proportion of female introductions [69%] being successful after visual access than those without it [85%; X2=3.64, P<0.06]. Analysis of this database replicated the finding that successful introductions involve individuals with relatively larger body weight difference between partners [females: Mann-Whitney U=2622, P<0.01; males: U=1319, P<0.05]. Prior to introduction, females later paired successfully were relatively more aggressive toward people [U=2773, P<0.05] and less willing to take treats [U=2757, P<0.05] during temperament testing in comparison to those paired unsuccessfully. Individual males did not show effects of temperament in single caging on later pairing success. Rather, the difference in temperament among male partners was relevant. Successful pairs were more similar in the degree of fearful response to observers [U=1268, P<0.05] and expression of abnormal behavior [U=1223, P<0.05] than unsuccessful pairs. Procedures for providing social housing for laboratory primates will continue to advance as we gain additional insight into outcome predictors.