Behaviour 2019
Sex and Age Differences in Activity Budgets in a Population of Captive African Penguins (Spheniscus demersus)
Sean P Coyne1, Trystin Figel2, Kirsten Martin2. 1Notre Dame of Maryland University, Baltimore, MD, United States; 2University of Saint Joseph Connecticut , West Hartford, CT, United States

The African penguin (Spheniscus demersus) is an endangered species that continues to experience population decline. Understanding the behavior of this species is a critical step in the conservation efforts to prevent their extinction. A comprehensive activity budget of this species has yet to be conducted in any captive population, which are critical for the Species Survival Plan (SSP) breeding programs. We performed scan sampling observations on a group of 19 penguins to construct an activity budget. We also investigated the behavioral differences between males and females, as well as between adults and juveniles. Results indicate there are minimal sex differences in time budget allocations. Males and females only differ significantly in territory display (higher in males). There were several age related differences. Adults spend more time preening (self and social) and mating. Juveniles spend more time engaging in object play, swimming, and stretching. Creating and comparing activity budgets between populations are critical for understanding animal welfare in captive settings.