Solenn Pelle

Research Interests

Assessing animal welfare for macaques with animal-based measures and cognitive bias task.

After a Bachelor in Psychology and Sociology at the University of Montreal, I am currently completing a Master degree in Cognitive Science at the University of Neuchâtel with a specialization in animal cognition. In collaboration with Éthosph’R, an association for animal welfare, I am establishing a welfare protocol for macaques (Macaca). This protocol on animal-based measures aims to improve animal welfare in zoological parks and labs, especially when an animal is introduced to a new environment.

In addition of the welfare protocol, I am conducting a study on a cognitive bias task, under the supervision of Klaus Zuberbühler and Odile Petit. This test allows us to measure emotional valence in an animal, which is a great tool to assess animal welfare, besides the protocol. With a “Go/No-Go” judgement bias task, we are able to determine if the animal is in a negative affective state, thus presenting a pessimist bias or in positive affective state, thus presenting an optimist bias. To establish the protocol and the cognitive bias test, I work with the Institut de Neurosciences de la Timone (INT) which is a research center in neurosciences experimenting on laboratory macaques, and the Zoo Refuge La Tanière which rehabilitates macaques.

For a better understanding of the welfare protocol and my mission with Éthosph’R: https://ethosphr.com/

You can also find some previous experiment using cognitive bias test with chimpanzees (Bateson, 2015), horses (Henry, 2017) and sheep (Doyle, 2011).