Behaviour change in Amur tigers Panthera tigris altaica after an enclosure move
Keywords:amur tiger, enclosure, environmental enrichment
It can be challenging for zoological collections to provide captive animals with a habitat that meets all of their needs. The study of enclosures is therefore of paramount importance, with evaluation ensuring animals are housed in enclosures that meet the necessary welfare standards and provide adequate levels of enrichment. Here, the behaviour of socially housed Amur tigers Panthera tigris altaica was studied before and after a move into a large, novel and topographically diverse enclosure to assess the impact of the enclosure change. Significant differences in behaviour were observed, in particular a decrease in frequency of locomotion but an increase in diversity of locomotion, alongside an increase in resting and a decrease in stereotypical pacing. These results indicate moving to a more complex enclosure with more environmental enrichment has positive implications for tiger welfare in captivity.
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