The use of positive reinforcement training to reduce stereotypic behavior in rhesus macaques

Kristine Coleman, Adriane Maier

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    29 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Stereotypic behavior is a pervasive problem for captive monkeys and other animals. Once this behavior pattern has started, it can be difficult to alleviate. We tested whether or not using positive reinforcement training (PRT) can reduce this undesired behavior. Subjects for this study were 11 adult, female rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta) with a history of locomotor stereotypy (e.g., pacing, bouncing, and somersaulting). We assessed baseline levels of stereotypic behavior and then utilized PRT to train six animals to touch a target and accept venipuncture. The other five monkeys served as controls. We assessed stereotypic behavior 1 week a month for 4 months, on days in which the monkey was not trained. Trained animals showed a significant reduction in stereotypic behavior after 1 month of training, compared to control monkeys (Mann-Whitney U = 28.00, P = 0.02). These group differences did not persist after the first month (Month 2: Mann-Whitney U = 19.50, P = 0.40, Month 3: Mann-Whitney U = 17.0, P = 0.71, Month 4: Mann-Whitney U = 17.00, P = 0.72). Still, the majority of the trained monkeys (n = 4) engaged in less stereotypic behavior at the end of the study compared to baseline. Thus, training may be an effective way to reduce stereotypic behavior, at least for some individuals.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)142-148
    Number of pages7
    JournalApplied Animal Behaviour Science
    Volume124
    Issue number3-4
    DOIs
    StatePublished - May 2010

    Fingerprint

    stereotyped behavior
    Macaca mulatta
    monkeys
    Haplorhini
    animals
    touch (sensation)
    Phlebotomy
    Reinforcement (Psychology)
    Touch

    Keywords

    • Nonhuman primate
    • Operant conditioning
    • Stereotypy
    • Welfare

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Animal Science and Zoology
    • Food Animals

    Cite this

    The use of positive reinforcement training to reduce stereotypic behavior in rhesus macaques. / Coleman, Kristine; Maier, Adriane.

    In: Applied Animal Behaviour Science, Vol. 124, No. 3-4, 05.2010, p. 142-148.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    @article{c8dd0257fceb43648cecab0935d9b4f3,
    title = "The use of positive reinforcement training to reduce stereotypic behavior in rhesus macaques",
    abstract = "Stereotypic behavior is a pervasive problem for captive monkeys and other animals. Once this behavior pattern has started, it can be difficult to alleviate. We tested whether or not using positive reinforcement training (PRT) can reduce this undesired behavior. Subjects for this study were 11 adult, female rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta) with a history of locomotor stereotypy (e.g., pacing, bouncing, and somersaulting). We assessed baseline levels of stereotypic behavior and then utilized PRT to train six animals to touch a target and accept venipuncture. The other five monkeys served as controls. We assessed stereotypic behavior 1 week a month for 4 months, on days in which the monkey was not trained. Trained animals showed a significant reduction in stereotypic behavior after 1 month of training, compared to control monkeys (Mann-Whitney U = 28.00, P = 0.02). These group differences did not persist after the first month (Month 2: Mann-Whitney U = 19.50, P = 0.40, Month 3: Mann-Whitney U = 17.0, P = 0.71, Month 4: Mann-Whitney U = 17.00, P = 0.72). Still, the majority of the trained monkeys (n = 4) engaged in less stereotypic behavior at the end of the study compared to baseline. Thus, training may be an effective way to reduce stereotypic behavior, at least for some individuals.",
    keywords = "Nonhuman primate, Operant conditioning, Stereotypy, Welfare",
    author = "Kristine Coleman and Adriane Maier",
    year = "2010",
    month = "5",
    doi = "10.1016/j.applanim.2010.02.008",
    language = "English (US)",
    volume = "124",
    pages = "142--148",
    journal = "Applied Animal Behaviour Science",
    issn = "0168-1591",
    publisher = "Elsevier",
    number = "3-4",

    }

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - The use of positive reinforcement training to reduce stereotypic behavior in rhesus macaques

    AU - Coleman, Kristine

    AU - Maier, Adriane

    PY - 2010/5

    Y1 - 2010/5

    N2 - Stereotypic behavior is a pervasive problem for captive monkeys and other animals. Once this behavior pattern has started, it can be difficult to alleviate. We tested whether or not using positive reinforcement training (PRT) can reduce this undesired behavior. Subjects for this study were 11 adult, female rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta) with a history of locomotor stereotypy (e.g., pacing, bouncing, and somersaulting). We assessed baseline levels of stereotypic behavior and then utilized PRT to train six animals to touch a target and accept venipuncture. The other five monkeys served as controls. We assessed stereotypic behavior 1 week a month for 4 months, on days in which the monkey was not trained. Trained animals showed a significant reduction in stereotypic behavior after 1 month of training, compared to control monkeys (Mann-Whitney U = 28.00, P = 0.02). These group differences did not persist after the first month (Month 2: Mann-Whitney U = 19.50, P = 0.40, Month 3: Mann-Whitney U = 17.0, P = 0.71, Month 4: Mann-Whitney U = 17.00, P = 0.72). Still, the majority of the trained monkeys (n = 4) engaged in less stereotypic behavior at the end of the study compared to baseline. Thus, training may be an effective way to reduce stereotypic behavior, at least for some individuals.

    AB - Stereotypic behavior is a pervasive problem for captive monkeys and other animals. Once this behavior pattern has started, it can be difficult to alleviate. We tested whether or not using positive reinforcement training (PRT) can reduce this undesired behavior. Subjects for this study were 11 adult, female rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta) with a history of locomotor stereotypy (e.g., pacing, bouncing, and somersaulting). We assessed baseline levels of stereotypic behavior and then utilized PRT to train six animals to touch a target and accept venipuncture. The other five monkeys served as controls. We assessed stereotypic behavior 1 week a month for 4 months, on days in which the monkey was not trained. Trained animals showed a significant reduction in stereotypic behavior after 1 month of training, compared to control monkeys (Mann-Whitney U = 28.00, P = 0.02). These group differences did not persist after the first month (Month 2: Mann-Whitney U = 19.50, P = 0.40, Month 3: Mann-Whitney U = 17.0, P = 0.71, Month 4: Mann-Whitney U = 17.00, P = 0.72). Still, the majority of the trained monkeys (n = 4) engaged in less stereotypic behavior at the end of the study compared to baseline. Thus, training may be an effective way to reduce stereotypic behavior, at least for some individuals.

    KW - Nonhuman primate

    KW - Operant conditioning

    KW - Stereotypy

    KW - Welfare

    UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=77950519957&partnerID=8YFLogxK

    UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=77950519957&partnerID=8YFLogxK

    U2 - 10.1016/j.applanim.2010.02.008

    DO - 10.1016/j.applanim.2010.02.008

    M3 - Article

    VL - 124

    SP - 142

    EP - 148

    JO - Applied Animal Behaviour Science

    JF - Applied Animal Behaviour Science

    SN - 0168-1591

    IS - 3-4

    ER -