Captive Animal Activity Display for Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginiaus virginiaus)
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Traditional zoo displays deprive the captive animal of environmental stimuli. Activity displays are an alternative method of displaying captive animals, which offers the animal the chance to exhibit its evolutionarily designed abilities. Control of the environment is returned to the captive animal by making the availability of food contingent upon the animals emittance of a specific response. A great horned owl (Bubo virginiaus viriniaus) was trained to respond, within an activity display consisting of a smaIl tree, telephone pole, fence post, and rock feeder, by the delivery of bits of freshly killed mice. Stable responding was achieved within 42 days from the initiation of conditioning procedures. General activity and ease in handling of the subject were increased as a result of the institution of this display.