General activity behaviors are a subcategory of Active Behaviors and are very goal-oriented.
When a mouse interacts with another mouse, be it socially or aggressively, or when a mouse is exploring novel objects, these behaviors all comprise general activity behaviors. Abnormal behaviors, which are atypical to the healthy control mouse, may also be studied as general activity behaviors.
Sometimes, certain mouse models or strains may display more instances of specific behaviors and less of others. For example, mice modeling autism spectrum disorder have general activity behaviors which are characterized as being high in abnormality (due to high repetition of certain behaviors, when compared to normal mice) and low in affiliative behaviors (due to low interaction with their cagemates, when compared to normal mice). Young mice display high levels of affiliative and exploratory behaviors while adult mice are more likely to display agonistic behaviors in the presence of another mouse.
General activity behaviors take up a large proportion of a mouse’s time and can be measured, in order to gauge the mouse’s health and well-being. Thus, general behaviors are an important area of research and focus for behavioral scientists.
General Activity Behaviors in Research
General activity behaviors which are frequently observed and analyzed in behavioral studies include:
- Abnormal behaviors
- Affiliative behaviors
- Agonistic behaviors
- Exploratory behaviors
- Maternal behaviors
- Miscellaneous behaviors
- Sexual behaviors
General activity behaviors together with Maintenance Behaviors comprise a mouse’s full scope of active behaviors.