When a habitat becomes a home: Housing and husbandry of spotted hyenas Crocuta crocuta at Disney’s Animal Kingdom®
Keywords:acclimation, behaviour, enrichment, management, training
When animals are moved between facilities, as is commonly done in zoos, it may take them time to acclimate to their new surroundings. One way that zoos can increase animals’ comfort in their new habitat is through training and enrichment programmes. In 2014, Disney’s Animal Kingdom® received two spotted hyenas Crocuta crocuta that had not been previously housed in a zoo environment. To acclimate the hyenas to zoo life, a training and enrichment programme was designed, implemented and evaluated. During this time, formal behavioural observations were conducted on the frequency of behaviours such as resting, traveling, pacing and feeding. From these data, behavioural time-budgets were created to track changes in the frequency of behaviours over time. The study found that the hyenas spent the majority of their day resting, followed by traveling, and overall, revealed a decrease in pacing throughout the data collection period. From these observations and experiences with the training and enrichment programmes, it is recommended that facilities housing hyenas be prepared to evaluate their programmes often, as the hyenas were found to be capable and fast learners, benefitting from a routine and feeding strategies that included different types of food in varying presentation formats.
How to Cite
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).