Rahul and the hen

27 02 2017

Lovely article and video from Alexandra’s lab!


“Reducetarian” conference

27 02 2017

screenshot-2017-02-27-10-08-26This looks like a really good meeting in NY in May (nice find from Alex’s student Patrick). I wonder if it’ll be the same super-rational crowd as at the Princeton meeting?


What horses want: Equids make their needs known by touching symbols

26 02 2017

screenshot-2017-02-26-16-29-46In this lovely paper in AABS, which I’ve just read for a book chapter Melissa Bateson and I sent off to our long-suffering editor last week, horses were trained (incredibly quickly) to use symbols to request to have a blanket removed or put on, which they promptly did according to what the weather was like.

It also attracted some nice media coverage too, from ABC News and Science news’ Virgina Morell.

‘Keeping Up With The Kattarshians’

26 02 2017

screenshot-2017-02-26-16-18-43Iceland’s new hit reality TV show is discussed here and live-streamed here. (Right now, all the kittens are sleeping soundly in their bunk beds….)

Another application in

24 02 2017

After the disappointment of not getting the Fulbright he applied for, prospective student Sascreenshot-2017-02-24-17-39-24m and I have — as is the norm in this game — picked ourselves up, dusted ourselves down, and applied elsewhere: this time to the OMAFRA HQP programme. Fingers tightly crossed ’til April or so.

Skyping from Chapters

23 02 2017

It’s Reading Week here, and with Andrea (L) and our undergrad research student Shining (R) both at home with family in Toronto, the best way to meet up seemed to be for them to get together, with me then skyping in from Guelph.

So, here they are in a quiet nook under some magazines in the Markham Chapters (Starbucks proving way too noisy), all ready to thrash out some tough issues. We are trying to do our first ever proper meta-analysis, calculating ‘effect sizes’ from lab primate enrichment studies to see what predicts the best ways to tackle abnormal repetitive behaviour.



And Ringo is dead too

23 02 2017

Sad news from Ze’ev. That just leaves Paul, John, George and George. Time to sneakily rename them?

Sad news this week

23 02 2017

Click here for good obit from NC State.


40 mink, 4 ponds and 2 creeks:

23 02 2017

: it’s a new paper on “German mink heaven”!

I can’t help wondering what would happen if those 40 grow up into adults. But for these juveniles, it sounds pretty great.


Cool new comparative paper on bacula

23 02 2017

Long bones, long intromissions: that’s the story in this nice new paper that Maria just found. (I wonder if we could see if that’s true within-species too? Enrichment certainly boosts penis bone development in mink…)