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Presence of a privacy divider increases proximity in pair-housed rhesus monkeys

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Use of a privacy panel in the home cage of female pair-housed rhesus monkeys has been reported to increase time spent in close proximity and time spent in affiliative behaviours. In the current study we measured these behaviours in more diverse populations; including male-male and male-female pairs of monkeys actively participating in cognitive experiments. We observed twenty-five pairs of rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta) both with and without the presence of a privacy divider. Monkeys spent significantly more time in the same half of the pair-cage when the divider was in place. A significant increase in affiliative behaviour was not observed. The effects of privacy dividers previously reported for female monkeys partially extend to male pairs and mixed sex pairs under conditions typical of an active research setting.
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Keywords: ANIMAL WELFARE; MACAQUE; PAIR-HOUSING; PRIMATE; PRIVACY; SOCIAL

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 February 2007

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