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Anne van den Oever started her studies in Veterinary Science at the University of Antwerp, Belgium in 2007. After two years she decided to change to the bachelor study of Biology at Wageningen University, which suited her interests better. She continued at Wageningen University for her master studies in Biology and obtained her degree in Biology in 2014, specializing in Animal Adaptation and Behavioural Biology. For her thesis at the Behavioural Ecology Group, she studied how mate preference was related to maternal investment in terms of egg size, brooding behaviour and care for the offspring in Chinese quail. During her research internship she joined the Behavioural Science Unit of Taronga Zoo in Sydney, Australia. At this zoo, she observed the behaviour of red-tailed black cockatoos kept under two different housing and husbandry conditions. In 2016 she started working as a researcher for Vencomatic Group, where she began her PhD project in January 2017 in collaboration with the Adaptation Physiology Group of Wageningen University. After finishing her PhD, Anne will continue to work for Vencomatic Group.
The PhD project focussed on nesting behaviour of broiler breeders. Due to the complicated genetic background of these birds, they tend to lay more eggs outside of the nests provided at farms. Through multiple experiments, different factors involved in choosing a nesting location were investigated. These factors were: motivation to visit the nest by altering nest design, ability to reach the nest in terms of leg health behaviour and opportunity to enter the nest with a focus on social interactions including gregarious nesting.