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17 April 2014 12:48 pm ,
Vol. 344 ,
Officials last week revealed that the U.S. contribution to ITER could cost $3.9 billion by 2034—roughly four times the...
An experimental hepatitis B drug that looked safe in animal trials tragically killed five of 15 patients in 1993. Now,...
Using the two high-quality genomes that exist for Neandertals and Denisovans, researchers find clues to gene activity...
A new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes that humanity has done little to slow...
Astronomers have discovered an Earth-sized planet in the habitable zone of a red dwarf—a star cooler than the sun—500...
Three years ago, Jennifer Francis of Rutgers University proposed that a warming Arctic was altering the behavior of the...
- 17 April 2014 12:48 pm , Vol. 344 , #6181
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ScienceShot: No Stage Fright for Performing Horses
25 February 2013 2:20 pm
Show horses may not be totally in sync with their riders, at least when it comes to nerves. Researchers reporting in a paper in press at The Veterinary Journal measured stress hormones and heart rates in six horses (one pictured) and professional riders from the classical dressage team of the French National Riding School in Saumur, France. They took the readings both after a practice session with no audience and after a performance in front of about 1000 spectators. While the riders' heart rates indicated stage fright in the live performance, the horses showed about the same levels of stress in both situations. Of course, there's no reason that horses should care what strangers think about the show, but the researchers were surprised that the riders didn't pass their performance anxiety to their steeds. The next step would be to test neophytes: It could be that expert equestrians are especially good at keeping their charges calm.
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