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Dev Psychobiol. 1982 Mar;15(2):105-11.

Effects of early environmental enrichment upon open-field behavior and timidity in the domestic chick.


Early environmental enrichment was evaluated by its effect on the behavior of 7-day-old male and female domestic chicks in an open field or novel environment and in a hole-in-the-wall test of timidity. The chicks were housed in same-sex groups of 10. The bare environments contained wood litter, food, and water, whereas the enriched boxes also contained various objects. In the open field, immobility was lower while feeding, walking, jumping and vocalization were higher in the enriched birds than in those reared in the bare environment. Enrichment also decreased emergence latencies in the hole-in-the-wall box. The increased stimulation provided by environmental enrichment may decrease fearfulness in subsequent fear-inducing situations and may enhance the ability of animals to adapt to novelty.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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