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Pig Farmers’ Perceptions, Attitudes, Influences and Management of Information in the Decision-Making Process for Disease ControlSubmitted on Sep 01, 2014 (Original item from 2013) Farmed Animals | General Animal Protection
This qualitative study conducted in-depth interviews with owners of small to medium sized pig farms across England to explore how they accessed information on pig diseases. The farmers relied more on their veterinarian, industry journals, and other farmers than on government information resources, suggesting that new findings in research may be most effectively communicated through veterinarians. Although economic factors were the top priority when deciding whether to treat disease, animal welfare was also a concern.
Naturalistic Exhibits May be More Effective Than Traditional Exhibits at Improving Zoo-Visitor Attitudes toward African ApesSubmitted on Aug 29, 2014 (Original item from 2014) Entertainment Animals | General Animal Protection | Wildlife and Exotics
This study compared entrance and exit survey responses from visitors to a stark, utilitarian zoo habitat for chimpanzees and gorillas in 2002 to survey answers after a larger, brighter, more natural-appearing habitat had been built for them in 2005. While visitors to the new environment did not learn more about the animals than visitors to the old environment, their overall positive feelings towards apes in general and chimpanzees in particular did increase.
A Review on the Temporal Pattern of Deer–Vehicle Accidents: Impact of Seasonal, Diurnal and Lunar Effects in CervidsSubmitted on Aug 28, 2014 (Original item from 2014) General Animal Protection | Wildlife and Exotics
This literature review surveyed 72 datasets for patterns in the timing of animal-vehicle collisions. Species studied included wapiti (elk), moose, and white-tailed, mule, red and roe deer. The authors identified 9 seasonal collision patterns, which correlate with months when activity is highest due to seasonal migration, mating, birth of young, hunting, bright moonlight, and agricultural harvesting. Convergences of human/animal traffic at dusk and dawn also result in higher collision rates, as does low visibility due to weather or day length.
Dogs are routinely housed in pairs in animal shelters to reduce stress, since they are a social species. This study examined whether separation of these pairs due to euthanasia or adoption produced stress. Dogs were separated after spending 7-8 weeks together. Their hormone and antibody levels were measured and their behavior was observed. Changes were found in immune response and some behaviors after separation, suggesting that it may be stressful.
This paper compares three different strategies to reduce long-term greenhouse gases from the farming of animals: increased productivity, technological means to clean up farming-related emissions, and dietary changes away from meat and milk on a global scale. Considering the potential for each strategy to meet the UN goal of maintaining global temperature below the 2°C increase, alone and in combination with the others, the authors conclude that it is unlikely the goals can be met without including a dietary change strategy.
This extensive 2005 Dutch pilot study conducted in-depth interviews with animal testing stakeholders for a report on ways that animal testing can be reduced in Europe. Multiple factors contributing to the continuation of animal testing were explored, including regulatory and legislative, technical, political and administrative, and social factors. The study identified opportunities for change, primarily associated with improved communication and coordination.
This study measured whether native grass buffers planted around fields of row crops were beneficial to at-risk bird species. Buffered fields were compared with non-buffered fields in 14 states over a 6-year period. The majority of species showed dramatically higher breeding populations near buffered fields, while a minority of species showed moderately higher populations near unbuffered fields, or varied from year to year. The authors recommend targeting buffers to areas where the species who are most helped by them most need support.
Koalas at a conservation center in Australia were observed for this study. Visitor noise of different intensities was recorded and played back while the koalas were videotaped. Koalas became more vigilant when more visitors were in close proximity, and with sudden increases in noise level. The koalas spent nearly 25% of their active time displaying visitor-related vigilance. The authors note this effect may be intensified by smaller enclosures.
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