POSITIVELY INFLUENCING THE WELL-BEING OF ANIMALS WORLDWIDE
It is amazing that when you have a mission statement like … positively influencing the well being of animals worldwide … which has no mention of profits or money, that you find that what you need you can attract. So being non-profit focused does not conflict with being able to achieve all that you wish to achieve in this life time. We hope that this attitude to treating money as merely a form of energy comes through clearly in all that we do. It has worked for us in that we have been able to fund the NAC Sanctuary and the Zebra Behaviour PhD research project (which has been operating since 2006) all based on this concept.
Heather’s first PhD paper can be downloaded at: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s13364-011-0061-x
Or just type ‘Heather Simpson 5 year study of the plains zebra’ in to Google Scolar and it will find it for you.
The abstract is in the magazine: Acta Theriologica
Social structure, vigilance and behaviour of plains zebra (Equus burchellii): a 5-year case study of individuals living on a managed wildlife reserve
Most studies of plains zebra (Equus burchellii) have focused on population ecology and have not included long-term observations of identified individuals. Over a 5-year period, we studied the crepuscular activities of 13 individual zebras within a focal group held within a managed game reserve. We also examined individual residency within the group by recording births, mortalities and longevity of group membership by adults. Residency of individuals living in other groups on the reserve was similarly monitored to examine variability in social structure within this closed population over an extended period of time. Stable, female groups were the mainstay of group sociality with male mean residency at 31.6 months being variable in length or even absent. Social interactions across all categories of zebras were free from aggression. Despite an absence of non-human predators, the proportion of dusk time budget allocated to vigilance was high, at 41% for males during periods when they accompanied stable female groups and 12% for females during these same periods. Female vigilance increased significantly to 19% when males were not resident. Females spent 70% of the time grazing and males just 36%. Due to its long-term nature, we concluded this study established a base line for plains zebra activity that could assist in understanding the factors that influence the successful management and conservation of healthy populations.