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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-09-2011, 02:28 PM
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As nice as it is, how are people not outraged that they were locked up for 30 years in the first place?
how do you think lab animals live, exactly? they aren't free-range, and not just because scientists hate animals, but that it screws with the controls of the experiment. I was surprised to see that their indoor playpen was as nice as it was, although it wasn't clear that they'd always had access to that.


Re: the hugging, I'm not sure that they were hugging, at least in the way humans do, implying affection and joy. That could have meant a lot of other things, like aggression toward a lower-ranking member, a fear reaction to an environment they'd never encountered, or just animals goofing around. It's nice to imagine that elation would be the first response from a creature that had never seen the sun or outdoors, but apprehension and fear might be more likely, imo.

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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-09-2011, 02:50 PM Thread Starter
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how do you think lab animals live, exactly? they aren't free-range, and not just because scientists hate animals, but that it screws with the controls of the experiment. I was surprised to see that their indoor playpen was as nice as it was, although it wasn't clear that they'd always had access to that.


Re: the hugging, I'm not sure that they were hugging, at least in the way humans do, implying affection and joy. That could have meant a lot of other things, like aggression toward a lower-ranking member, a fear reaction to an environment they'd never encountered, or just animals goofing around. It's nice to imagine that elation would be the first response from a creature that had never seen the sun or outdoors, but apprehension and fear might be more likely, imo.
The indoor playpen is simply the indoor part of thier new home. I suspect they kept them in there for a while for them to accustomize themselves with each other and to form bonds. I would imagine taking them straight from the lab and shoving them outside together would have sent them a bit mental.

As for the hugging... who really knows. My instincts are telling me that they are happy. But you're right, we cant be sure.
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-10-2011, 03:21 PM
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but apprehension and fear might be more likely, imo.

How and why?

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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-10-2011, 03:54 PM
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How and why?
encountering a giant world they'd never seen before? if you'd lived in a dark cave all your life, even as a reasoning human i think you'd be very nervous about an open sky alone. i'm no animal psychologist but I think it's more likely than the "they are hugging in joy" theory. you can even see apprehension, quite apparently, in their tentativeness to go out the door.

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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-11-2011, 11:18 AM Thread Starter
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encountering a giant world they'd never seen before? if you'd lived in a dark cave all your life, even as a reasoning human i think you'd be very nervous about an open sky alone. i'm no animal psychologist but I think it's more likely than the "they are hugging in joy" theory. you can even see apprehension, quite apparently, in their tentativeness to go out the door.
I was reading a bit more about this in our local paper. The playpen is indeed the indoor section of their new home. It has windows in it by they are quite high as to not freak them out and give them a chance to get used to the daylight. They were kept in this section for quite some time before being let outdoors to allow them to form a pack and hierarchy. So, it's not quite as harsh as the initial story suggests. They didn't just pluck them from their cells and dump them outside.

As for the hugging... its not so strange it seems:-
http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/episo...elatives/1909/

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Goodall has also documented affectionate touching instantly recognizable to people: hugs, kisses, pats on the back, even tickles. “They show gestures that we’re so familiar with,” Goodall noted in a recent speech to the National Press Club in Washington, DC.

These caresses are evidence, she said, of “the close, supportive, affectionate bonds that develop between family members and other individuals within a community, which can persist throughout a life span of more than 50 years.”
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