Title

The Effects of Signage on Zoo Visitors at a Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) Exhibit

Document Type

Oral Presentation

Location

SURC Ballroom A

Start Date

17-5-2012

End Date

17-5-2012

Abstract

Zoo visitors can be stressful to zoo residents, particularly the popular apes. This study explored ways to impact the interaction between visitors and zoo living chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes). A sign depicting a friendly chimpanzee behavior, the head nod, was present at an exhibit in an experimental condition. The absence of the sign was the control condition. From videotape of visitors, observers recorded the duration of looks toward the sign and the occurrence of a head nod in the subsequent 10 s. The mode duration of looks toward the sign was 3 s. Of those looks, 37.5% were followed by a head nod. This shows that signs are a way to affect visitor behavior and is a potential way to improve animal welfare.

Poster Number

29

Faculty Mentor(s)

Mary Lee Jensvold

Additional Mentoring Department

Primate Behavior

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May 17th, 2:00 PM May 17th, 4:30 PM

The Effects of Signage on Zoo Visitors at a Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) Exhibit

SURC Ballroom A

Zoo visitors can be stressful to zoo residents, particularly the popular apes. This study explored ways to impact the interaction between visitors and zoo living chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes). A sign depicting a friendly chimpanzee behavior, the head nod, was present at an exhibit in an experimental condition. The absence of the sign was the control condition. From videotape of visitors, observers recorded the duration of looks toward the sign and the occurrence of a head nod in the subsequent 10 s. The mode duration of looks toward the sign was 3 s. Of those looks, 37.5% were followed by a head nod. This shows that signs are a way to affect visitor behavior and is a potential way to improve animal welfare.