Abstract # 171:

Scheduled for Saturday, June 23, 2007 08:30 AM-10:30 AM: Session 16 (North Main Hall F/G) Symposium

Integrating Science into the Behavioral Management of Nonhuman Primates: Two Decades of Progress

M. A. Bloomsmith1,2
1Yerkes National Primate Research Center, Emory University, 954 Gatewood Rd, Atlanta, GA 30329, USA, 2Center for Conservation and Behavior, Georgia Tech
     About twenty years ago new regulations were enacted requiring facilities that house nonhuman primates to promote their “psychological well-being.” Over the last two decades most major primate facilities have invested resources in developing, implementing and assessing behavioral management programs that address issues related to primate psychological well-being. The applications of environmental enrichment, socialization procedures, and animal training techniques have all expanded tremendously during this timeframe. Behavioral scientists have used previously existing scientific literature as a foundation for these programs, and have conducted new research to evaluate various elements of behavioral management. This symposium will describe some of the ways behavioral science has been consulted, applied, and expanded as behavioral management programs have matured. The current state of the science with regard to particular behavioral problems (e.g., alopecia (hair loss), other behavioral pathologies) will be discussed, with a focus on the current understanding of causes and treatments. Some presentations will explore the potential for the application of established scientific theories to the study of behavioral management. Issues being addressed in different types of facilities housing nonhuman primates will be described, including zoos, sanctuaries and primate laboratories. By drawing more deeply from science and scientists, the field of behavioral management will become more effective and productive.