Journal article

Effects of visual contact with zoo visitors on black-capped capuchin welfare

Sally L Sherwen, Trista J Harvey, Michael JL Magrath, Kym L Butler, Kerry V Fanson, Paul H Hemsworth

Applied Animal Behaviour Science | ELSEVIER | Published : 2015

Abstract

Previous research has suggested that the presence of zoo visitors may be stressful for various primate species, and visual contact with visitors may be the sensory stimuli that mediate visitor effects. We studied a group of black-capped capuchins, Cebus apella, in a controlled experiment, randomly imposing two treatments: customised one-way vision screens on the exhibit viewing windows to reduce visual contact with visitors; and unmodified viewing windows that allow full visual contact with visitors. We sampled capuchin behaviour including intra-group aggression and other social interactions, vigilance and abnormal behaviours. To provide a measure of physiological stress, we also analysed ca..

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