Next Article in Journal
Preliminary Evaluation of Potential Impacts Associated with Small Cetacean Remote Biopsy Sampling by Controlled Testing on Stranded Common Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)
Previous Article in Journal
A Census of Federally Regulated Big Cat Populations within the United States as of December 2020
Review

Animal Training, Environmental Enrichment, and Animal Welfare: A History of Behavior Analysis in Zoos

1
School of Animal and Veterinary Science, The University of Adelaide, Adelaide, SA 5005, Australia
2
Department of Psychological Science, Kennesaw State University, Kennesaw, GA 30144, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Kris Descovich
J. Zool. Bot. Gard. 2021, 2(4), 531-543; https://doi.org/10.3390/jzbg2040038
Received: 30 August 2021 / Revised: 11 September 2021 / Accepted: 23 September 2021 / Published: 13 October 2021
The modern zoo has been associated with two major behavioral welfare advances: (a) the use of training to increase voluntary husbandry care, and (b) the implementation of environmental enrichment to promote naturalistic behaviors. Both practices have their roots in behavior analysis, or the operant conditioning-centered, reward-based approach to behavioral psychology. Operant conditioning served as the foundation for the development of reinforcement-based training methods commonly used in zoos to make veterinary and husbandry procedures easier and safer for animals and their caregivers. Likewise, operant conditioning, with its focus on arranging environmental antecedents and consequences to change behavior, also provided a framework for successful environmental enrichment practices. In this paper, we outline the key individuals and events that shaped two of the cornerstones of the modern zoo: (1) the emergence of reward-based husbandry training practices, and (2) the engineering of environmental enrichment. In addition, we (3) suggest ways in which behavior analysis can continue to advance zoo welfare by (i) expanding the efficacy of environmental enrichment, (ii) using within-subject methodology, and (iii) improving animal-visitor interactions. Our goal is to provide a historical and contextual reference for future efforts to improve the well-being of zoo animals. View Full-Text
Keywords: animal training; animal welfare; behavior analysis; behavioral engineering; environmental enrichment; operant conditioning; zoos animal training; animal welfare; behavior analysis; behavioral engineering; environmental enrichment; operant conditioning; zoos
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Fernandez, E.J.; Martin, A.L. Animal Training, Environmental Enrichment, and Animal Welfare: A History of Behavior Analysis in Zoos. J. Zool. Bot. Gard. 2021, 2, 531-543. https://doi.org/10.3390/jzbg2040038

AMA Style

Fernandez EJ, Martin AL. Animal Training, Environmental Enrichment, and Animal Welfare: A History of Behavior Analysis in Zoos. Journal of Zoological and Botanical Gardens. 2021; 2(4):531-543. https://doi.org/10.3390/jzbg2040038

Chicago/Turabian Style

Fernandez, Eduardo J., and Allison L. Martin 2021. "Animal Training, Environmental Enrichment, and Animal Welfare: A History of Behavior Analysis in Zoos" Journal of Zoological and Botanical Gardens 2, no. 4: 531-543. https://doi.org/10.3390/jzbg2040038

Find Other Styles

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop