Upcoming debates

Sentience Mosaic hosts live online debates where a variety of topics related to animal sentience will be discussed. Details of our next debate are below, take part in the current debate if it is live, or alternatively set an email reminder. Debates and comments are moderated by the Sentience Mosaic editors to ensure they run smoothly and efficiently. Unfortunately we cannot guarantee that every question will be posted. Once a debate is completed it will move to our past debates archive, where it will be available to read.

Is animal sentience considered during live export?

Sentience Topic: Behaviour, Emotions Guest: Dr Clive Phillips and Dr Michelle Sinclair  Date: 22 Sep 2014  
Global Issue: Agriculture

Join us on the 22nd September 2014 at 3pm ( Australian Eastern Standard Time)

Each year millions of animals used in agriculture are transported long distances, to be slaughtered. Animals are often forced to endure crowded, unbearable conditions which often lead to illness and death during transportation. The welfare concerns of transporting live animals has been documented. 

Research exploring the emotional capabilities of farm animals has revealed that animals including sheep and cattle have complex emotional lives. We also know that certain husbandry procedures can improve their mental wellbeing, for example gentle and positive interactions between, handlers and cows can reduce stress reactions in cows during aversive situations. 

Is sentience considered during live export? Is scientific research and knowledge about the emotional lives of farm animals being utilised enough, to advocate for change in live export legislation and practice? 

Dr Clive Phillips, Chair in Animal Welfare, University of Queensland and Michelle Sinclair, Centre for Animal Welfare and Ethics, University of Queensland and Director of Animal Endeavours , will share their views on animal sentience and live export.

Once the discussion starts please post your questions/comments below for Clive and Michelle to answer. Alternatively send your questions to sentience@wspa-international.org in advance. Our panellists will answer your questions live on the web!

Did you know?

Behavioural and neurophysiological evidence suggests that rats experience regret when they make the wrong decision. Steiner, A.P and Redish, A.D. (2014). Nature Neuroscience