First and Last Name/s of Presenters

Ashley PenczynzynFollow
Kelly RosenbaumFollow

Mentor/s

Deirdre Yeater.

Participation Type

Poster

Abstract

There have been relatively few studies examining the social interactions among belugas (Delphinapterus leucas). The current study investigated the social behaviors and interactions, including socio-sexual behaviors, between five individual belugas housed in a managed care facility. The longitudinal study spanned over five years. The social groupings varied over the years, with two to four belugas living together at a time. This study aims to gain a better understanding of beluga social interactions under human care. The data were recorded at Mystic Aquarium then coded for social interactions. Results indicated that one male (sub-adult developing to an adult male over the course of the study) initiated the majority of the interactions. In addition, the individual social behavior acts observed at this facility corroborate with the findings of belugas in managed care at other facilities, as well as, with the growing body of knowledge about wild beluga behavior. Results of longitudinal studies on beluga social behaviors are important to inform researchers on what is needed for reproduction, which has been a threat to endangered wild beluga populations.

College and Major available

Psychology

Course Name and Number, Professor Name

Psychology Capstone: Research PS-397-C Professor Yeater

Location

Digital Commons

Start Day/Time

4-24-2020 2:00 PM

End Day/Time

4-24-2020 4:00 PM

Students' Information

Ashley Penczynzyn --- Senior (2020), Neuroscience, Honors student

Kelly Rosenbaum --- Junior (2021), Psychology.

Honorable Mention, Best Multidisciplinary Research or Collaboration 2020 award.

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Apr 24th, 2:00 PM Apr 24th, 4:00 PM

Social and Socio-sexual Interactions in Belugas (Delphinapterus leucas)

Digital Commons

There have been relatively few studies examining the social interactions among belugas (Delphinapterus leucas). The current study investigated the social behaviors and interactions, including socio-sexual behaviors, between five individual belugas housed in a managed care facility. The longitudinal study spanned over five years. The social groupings varied over the years, with two to four belugas living together at a time. This study aims to gain a better understanding of beluga social interactions under human care. The data were recorded at Mystic Aquarium then coded for social interactions. Results indicated that one male (sub-adult developing to an adult male over the course of the study) initiated the majority of the interactions. In addition, the individual social behavior acts observed at this facility corroborate with the findings of belugas in managed care at other facilities, as well as, with the growing body of knowledge about wild beluga behavior. Results of longitudinal studies on beluga social behaviors are important to inform researchers on what is needed for reproduction, which has been a threat to endangered wild beluga populations.