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Volume 42, issue 5
Arch. Anim. Breed., 42, 481–494, 1999
https://doi.org/10.5194/aab-42-481-1999
© Author(s) 1999. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Arch. Anim. Breed., 42, 481–494, 1999
https://doi.org/10.5194/aab-42-481-1999
© Author(s) 1999. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

  10 Oct 1999

10 Oct 1999

Der Feldermonitor – eine neue Möglichkeit der Lernforschung mit Tieren und Ergebnisse bei visuellen Differenzierungsaufgaben von Zwergziegen

H. Franz1 and H. Reichart2 H. Franz and H. Reichart
  • 1Forschungsinstitut für die Biologie landwirtschaftlicher Nutztiere (FBN), Wilhelm-Stahl-Allee 2, 18196 Dummerstorf, Germany
  • 2Forschungszentrum für Biosystemtechnik und Biomaterialien, Friedrich-Barnewitz-Straße 4, 18119 Rostock-Warnemünde, Germany

Abstract. Title of the paper: A general purpose Computer system for behavioral conditioning experiments, named "Feldermonitor" – a new possibility for learning experiments with animals and results of visual discrimination tasks in dwarf goats
The precise and automatised testing of sensoric as well as cognitive abilities of pets and livestock becomes increasingly important regarding both, the objecitve evaluation of their welfare and the develpoment of new automatic animal management facilities. The learning apparatus, named Feldermonitor and introduced here, proved to be a valuable apparatus for leaming experiments allowing continuous testing of leaming behaviour of animals under group as well as individual housing conditions. The developed hard and soft ware enables the tested animals to choose simultaneously among up to 12 options, which will confront them with a maximum of four elements of rewarding, informing or sanctioning.

The experiments described were performed with dwarf goats. The animals were tested using simultaneous discrimination tasks with two or four Stimuli and being rewarded with small portions of water after each success. Comparing mean learning curves it can be shown, that in case of consecutive leaming tests, successful leaming Starts eariier as well as faster with each additionally performed test. The rapidity of leaming increases also, if different discrimination tasks are offered consecutively. The coefficient of variation for learning success among animals was 10 to 20%, indicating high individual differences.

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