Skip to Main content Skip to Navigation
Journal articles

Social motivation and the use of distal, but not local, featural cues are related to ranging behavior in free-range chickens (Gallus gallus domesticus)

Abstract : Animals can navigate an environment relying on different sources of information, such as geometrical or featural cues. The favoring of one type of information over another depends on multiple factors, such as inter-individual differences in behavior and cognition. Free-range chickens present different range use patterns, which may be explained by behavioral and cognitive differences. However, how behavior, cognition, and range use intercorrelate is still poorly understood. In this work, we aimed to further understand possible differences in behavior and cognition between two groups of free-range broiler chickens: those who frequently explore their range ('high rangers') and those who prefer to stay in or near the barn ('low rangers'). Prior to range access, individual behavior was measured in open field-, emergence-, and social motivation tests. To investigate cognitive differences, we analyzed whether exploratory behavior was linked to different performances in the use of distal and local spatial cues during an orientation task. During the social motivation test, low rangers showed a higher inclination to be near conspecifics than did high rangers. Our orientation tests show that chickens preferred to orientate themselves using the local cues over the distal cues. Individual differences were only found for distal, but not for local, cue use suggesting that demanding tasks are more efficient in revealing individual cognitive differences. Our results suggest that considering variation in social motivation may allow a more comprehensive understanding of chicken range use. Our results also support the importance of incorporating multiple aspects of individual differences to understand individual reactions to its environment.
Document type :
Journal articles
Complete list of metadata

https://hal.inrae.fr/hal-03140125
Contributor : Eric Marchoux <>
Submitted on : Friday, February 12, 2021 - 3:34:29 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, May 19, 2021 - 10:37:18 AM

Identifiers

Collections

Citation

Vitor Hugo Bessa Ferreira, Maxence Barbarat, Flore Lormant, Karine Germain, Mathilde Brachet, et al.. Social motivation and the use of distal, but not local, featural cues are related to ranging behavior in free-range chickens (Gallus gallus domesticus). Animal Cognition, Springer Verlag (Germany), 2020, 23 (4), pp.769-780. ⟨10.1007/s10071-020-01389-w⟩. ⟨hal-03140125⟩

Share

Metrics

Record views

28