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Play as a reinforcer for maze-learning in juvenile rats

Published on Feb 1, 1981in Animal Behaviour2.675
· DOI :10.1016/S0003-3472(81)80173-X
Anne P. Humphreys2
Estimated H-index: 2
(Durham University),
Dorothy F. Einon6
Estimated H-index: 6
(Durham University)
Abstract
Abstract The reinforcing value of play for juvenile rats was examined, relative to that of other social experiences. Successive experimental groups chose, in a T-maze, between normal companions and companions whose social behaviour had been rendered abnormal by physical confinement or by amphetamine or chlorpromazine treatment. Both these drugs inhibited play, as did physical restriction, but they had opposing effects on other social behaviours, so that the choice presented was between social experiences with and without play. Young rats learnt these social discriminations as easily as a food/no food discrimination in the same apparatus, developing a preference for the playing partner. Non-playing partners indulging in large amounts of amicable social behaviour were chosen more frequently than unsociable animals.
  • References (19)
  • Citations (180)
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Zusammenfassung Unter nicht miteinander verwandten Wanderratten besteht eine sehr ausgesprochene Rangordnung. Bei der Paarbildung verbinden sich die Weibchen nur mit in der Rangordnung hoherstehenden Mannchen. Jedes Paar behauptet ein bestimmtes Revier und verteidigt es gegen fremde Ratten auf das heftigste. Die Nachkommen desPaares aber bleiben, falls die Nahrung ausreicht, im gleichen Revier, ebenso deren Nachkommen usw. Sie bilden zusammen ein Rudel. Innerhalb des Rudels gibt es keine Rangord...
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#1Trevor B. Poole (Aberystwyth University)H-Index: 16
#2Jane Fish (Aberystwyth University)H-Index: 3
The playful behaviour of laboratory rats (Rattus norvegicus) was investigated in litters of five individuals with the mother present; parallel observations were made on mice (Mus musculus). Seven mixed litters containing four young rats and a young mouse fostered at birth were also observed. Solitary play was recorded in both species and took a similar form but social play was only observed in rats. In rats, solitary play frequently preceeded social play. The behavioural elements involved in the...
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#1Dorothy L. Cheney (University of Cambridge)H-Index: 3
Abstract In a troop of free-ranging baboons, infants played predominantly with each other, and played most with the infant of the highest-ranking female in their mothers' subgroup. The frequency of infant play appeared to be affected both by age and by the number and ages of other infants in the troop. Juveniles and subadults played more with their siblings than with other animals of their siblings' age. Juvenile and subadult females played primarily with infants, and played most with infants wh...
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Juvenile rats were allowed short daily periods of social contact to see if this would reduce the known effects of isolation rearing upon habituation of locomotor activity and object contact in the open field. Animals totally deprived of social experience (ISOL) were slower to habituate than animals living in small social groups (SOC). Rats allowed 1 hr of social contact (partial isolates, PI), but living otherwise in isolation, were intermediate between ISOL and SOC animals. In further experimen...
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A description is given of social play in polecats (Mustela putorius L.) based on frame-by-frame analysis of cine film. Social play more closely resembles fighting than any other form of adult behaviour, but biting is inhibited, occupying only 2% of the polecats' time as opposed to 40% in fighting. A metacommunicatory function can be ascribed to behaviour occupying 48% of the time spent in social play; the open mouth play face is displayed for 16% of the time. It is postulated that the play face ...
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The social play of domestic cats in the laboratory and at home was examined. Categories and sequences of motor patterns were identified and analyzed. The developmental period during which social play was most frequent was established to be from 4 weeks to 4 months. The results suggest that social play functions to provide specific forms of exercise and as a means of developing and maintaining social relations among littermates. The decline in social play appears to be related to dispersal of the...
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