Evaluating Preference Between Sterile and Enriched Enclosures in False Water Cobras (Hydrodynastes gigas): A Case Study

Authors

  • Christopher Lloyd West Liberty University
  • Zachary Loughman West Liberty University

Abstract

Zoo funding is commonly directed towards charismatic megafauna within zoological institutions. Because of this, research and psychological studies on reptiles are lacking. As zoos started becoming a part of social culture, reptile houses became a part of that as well; however, the welfare of these early reptile houses significantly lacked compared to other zoo exhibitry (mammals and birds). Throughout the years more focus has been directed to the psychology and welfare of reptile/amphibian enclosure design. A common debate within this topic is if the reptile truly needs an environmentally stimulating enclosure or not.

The results from this case study suggest that environmentally enriched enclosures are preferred over sterile ones. Three of four snakes spent the majority of their time in enriched enclosures. In conclusion, the aim of this case study is to decipher if zoo funding should be directed to False water cobra (Hydrodynastes gigas) enclosure design based on behavioral data if required.

Author Biographies

Christopher Lloyd, West Liberty University

Student - Department of Natural Resourses & Mathematics

Zachary Loughman, West Liberty University

Assistant Professor of Biology - West Liberty University

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Published

2020-04-29

How to Cite

Lloyd, C., & Loughman, Z. (2020). Evaluating Preference Between Sterile and Enriched Enclosures in False Water Cobras (Hydrodynastes gigas): A Case Study. Proceedings of the West Virginia Academy of Science, 92(1). Retrieved from https://pwvas.org/index.php/pwvas/article/view/697

Issue

Section

Meeting Abstracts-Poster