Les hommes ont oublié cette vérité. Mais tu ne dois pas l'oublier, dit le renard. Tu deviens responsable pour toujours de ce que tu as apprivoisé.
Le Petit Prince, chap. 21

Monday, 8 December 2014

A new technique for monitoring the detailed behaviour of domestic cat

Watanabe, S., Izawa, M., Kato, A., Ropert-Coudert, Y., & Naito, Y. (2005). A new technique for monitoring the detailed behaviour of terrestrial animals: a case study with the domestic cat. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 94(1), 117-131.

For many animal species that are difficult to access, the behaviour of free-ranging individuals cannot be assessed by direct observation. In order to remedy this, we developed a new technique using a motion detector (acceleration data-logger) for monitoring the activity and behaviour of free-ranging vertebrates and tested its efficiency on a domestic cat, Felis catus. A total of 3615 min of surging acceleration was measured along the longitudinal body axis of an adult male cat. The cat's behaviour was also filmed for 113 min, these video data being used to correlate the logger's signals with the cat's behaviour. Acceleration data-loggers attached on the cat's collar recorded acceleration signals which were influenced by both the gravitational acceleration resulting from the body posture and the dynamic acceleration resulting from the dynamic behaviour of the cat. By applying spectral analysis based on a fast Fourier Transform to acceleration signals, body postures and some of the dynamic behaviours of the cat such as drinking, eating, and several paces of travelling were efficiently determined. The present study shows that acceleration data-loggers represent a useful and reliable system for accurately recording the activities and detail behaviours of the terrestrial animals.

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