Hot Topics in Welfare

Welfare science is a growing field that is uniquely interdisciplinary. Topics in welfare dwell at the intersection of ethics, law, and the social and natural sciences. Scientific research in animal welfare informs the care of captive primates in zoos, laboratories, sanctuaries, and other settings, as well as ethical and humane practices for field research and conservation.

Welfare topics related to captive care include enrichment and training strategies, the design of social and physical environments, study subject selection and research protocols, geriatric and end of life care, personality and temperament, animal acquisition and retirement, stress and abnormal behavior, and 24-hour welfare, among others. Researchers working with nonhuman primates in the wild are also concerned with welfare, including how research and capture protocols impact welfare, reintroduction of animals to the wild, and how welfare is affected by human activities such as habitat encroachment and the illegal wildlife trade.

Scientific advancements in welfare compel people working with nonhuman primates to question and improve current practices as a better understanding of animal needs and the conditions that promote good welfare are developed. Features in this section of the website will explore new research pertinent to animal welfare and its implications for caring and working with nonhuman primates. Check back quarterly for new topics and updates on groundbreaking research related to nonhuman primate welfare.

Read our current Hot Topic on the welfare of gorillas in the Democratic Republic of Congo here.