Warsaw Wild Captive Pisula Stryjek rats - Establishing a breeding colony of Norway Rat in captivity

Polish Psychological Bulletin 39 (2):67-70 (2008)
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Abstract

Warsaw Wild Captive Pisula Stryjek rats - Establishing a breeding colony of Norway Rat in captivity It is believed that the history of laboratory rat dates back to 1820-ies, which is about 300 generations. This relatively short evolutionary distance, drastically different environment and selective breeding could have caused differences in behaviour between the laboratory rat and his wild counterpart - Norway rat. The vast majority of research concerning differences between wild and laboratory rats was conducted over 30 years ago. The knowledge acquired as a result of that research seems far from being complete. Over a quarter of a century could have deepened the described differences. Nowadays the change in experimental approach, in favour of low stress conditions, can give a new insight into this problem. This article describes process of establishing a laboratory line of wild Norway rat, which will take part in a broad series of comparative studies. 16 wild rats were trapped in 5 distant parts of Warsaw. Most of wild rats successfully adapted to captive conditions, mating successfully and producing litters, which have survived to adolescence.

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Wojciech Pisula
Polish Academy of Sciences

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