Abstract # 3199 Event # 26:

Scheduled for Saturday, September 17, 2011 11:30 AM-11:45 AM: Session 6 (Meeting Room 410) Oral Presentation


ABNORMAL BEHAVIOR IN RHESUS MONKEYS: RISK FACTORS WITHIN AND BETWEEN ANIMALS AND FACILITIES

C. K. Lutz1, K. Coleman2, A. Maier2 and B. McCowan3
1Southwest National Primate Research Center, Texas Biomedical Research Institute, P.O. Box 760549, San Antonio, Texas 78245, USA, 2Oregon National Primate Research Center, 3California National Primate Research Center
line
     Abnormal behavior, ranging from pacing to potentially injurious behavior such as self-biting, has been routinely documented in a number of primate facilities. Previous studies have indicated risk factors such as sex, rearing history, and housing condition to be associated with abnormal behavior. However, it is unknown whether prevalence of these behaviors or associated risk factors can be generalized across facilities, which was the purpose of this study. Five-minute observations were conducted on 6412 Macaca mulatta at three primate facilities. We found that while monkeys at these facilities exhibited similar types of abnormal behavior, they showed differences in prevalence and associated risk factors of abnormal behaviors. For example, prevalence of motor stereotypies and self-biting behavior ranged from 18.4-48.4% and 0.2-3.1% across the three facilities respectively. For two of the facilities, one showed a positive association between the presence of motor stereotypy and number of rooms per building (odds ratio=1.03, p<0.0001), while the other did not. Other behaviors showed similar positive association with their risk factors (self-bite-# blood draws: odds ratio=1.01, p=0.036) but differed in their magnitude of occurrence (self-bite: odds ratio=29.1, p<0.0001) across facilities. The results indicate that while primates at different facilities exhibit similar types of abnormal behavior, they may do so in varying proportions and in response to different risk factors, which may in part be due to variation in management practices across facilities.