Frank Logiudice


This study observes the courtship behaviors of an Anodorhynchus hyacinthinus pair in the Central Florida Zoo and Botanical Gardens in Sanford, Florida. A. hyacinthinus reproductive behaviors occur in four steps in the following order: Allopreening, Cloacal allopreening, Back to Back Copulation Position and finally, Copulation (Schneider 2006). Behavioral observations were taken twice a week for an average of 2 to 3 hours each day for ten weeks. The resulting data was analyzed based on the different actions, types of movement, and types of maintenance observed of the A. hyacinthinus pair. Percentages and averages were then calculated for actions relevant to courtship behaviors – Destruction, Vocalization, Self-preening, and Mutual Preening. From the observations collected during this study, the pair only fully completed step 1 (Allopreening) of the mating process. This species is known to produce specialized vocalizations when Cloacal Allopreening (step 2) is reached (Schneider 2006). However, the specialized vocalizations were absent during observation sessions. One of the individuals was observed to attempt the beginning positions for step 3, Back-to-Back Copulation Position, but this action was not reciprocated by the other individual, suggesting Step 3 was not completed. Lastly, Copulation was not observed throughout the study. These findings nevertheless demonstrate that the A. hyacinthinus pair is well bonded and may be encouraged to copulate if given proper nesting materials and privacy.

About the Author

Pamela Mulkay, a Florida native, is a synonym of love, compassion, and a defendant of all animal rights. As a UCF Biology alumna, she has researched wildlife and worked as a veterinary technician to domestic animals. She has traveled and worked directly with zookeepers in the development and implementation of enrichment activities, diets, and medical care in Cairns, Australia. She plans to obtain her master’s degree in Zoology and Animal Behavior to establish and/or expand animal rehabilitation and conservation through education. Her passion and ultimate goals are to demonstrate that through education and awareness there is environmental and species preservation.



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