Abstract # 3026 Poster # 192:

Scheduled for Sunday, September 18, 2011 07:00 PM-09:00 PM: Session 23 (Salon G (Sixth Floor)) Poster Presentation


ETHOSEARCH: A NEW ONLINE RESOURCE FOR BEHAVIORAL ETHOGRAMS

S. R. Ross1, S. D. Thompson1, E. V. Lonsdorf1, L. M. Melber1, M. R. Ross1 and A. B. Clark2
1Lincoln Park Zoo, 2001 N. Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60614, USA, 2Binghamton University
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     Ethograms, as logically compiled catalogs of a species’ behavioral repertoire, represent a fundamental underpinning of behavioral research on a wide variety of animals including primates. Well-designed ethograms underlie any rigorous quantitative study of behavior, because they actually specify “units” of data, the acts or events that are recorded and relationships analyzed. As the recognized need for the collection of standardized behavioral information in captive and field study sites, along with the increase of collaborative, multi-institutional research, the need for a searchable and easily used database of ethograms becomes critical. Ethosearch: the Ethogram Archive Project (www.ethosearch.org) is designed to address this lack of consistency and provide a valuable resource to both researchers and students. The structure of Ethosearch is based upon the classification of specific behaviors and their functional and operational definitions. Every ethogram has a number of informative “metadata” tags. These include such information as author, publication and citation information and details on the animal population on which the ethogram is based. Users of the database are able to use these tags to access specific ethograms or behaviors of interest. The applications for an archived database of ethograms are broad. With potential application to both the scientific and education community, Ethosearch has a proven niche to address and has positioned itself as a critical resource to encourage high quality ethological endeavors.