Current Research

  • Keel bone deformities in laying hens.
  • Individual ranging behavior of laying hens in different flock sizes.
  • Design of aviaries for laying hens and housing systems for broiler breeders.
  • Validation of automated welfare assessment for broilers. 

I obtained an MSc in Biology from Florida State University at Tallahassee, USA, including an experimental thesis on the ecological  genetics of reproductive traits in Heterandria formosa (Pisces: Poeciliidae) and my PhD in biology from the University of Basel, Switzerland, including an experimental thesis on the genetical ecology of nestling growth in the great tit (Parus major).
After pursuing studies in evolutionary genetics and ecology in quail and blue and great tits (University of Georgia and Ethological Institute Hasli, University of Bern) I switched to topics regarding animal welfare of small companion animals (budgerigars, golden hamsters, dogs) at the division of animal housing and welfare, Vetsuisse Faculty, Bern.
In my current postdoctoral position, the main purpose of my research is to investigate housing conditions of laying hens in regard to animal welfare as they relate to the Swiss authorization procedure of housing equipment. I am interested in personalities of domesticated animals as they relate to different coping styles under artificial housing conditions. In this context I study individual ranging behavior of laying hens.
I am co-supervising research projects of PhD and MSc students, and teaching about animal welfare and housing of small mammals, ornamental birds, and birds as experimental animals.

For the full publication list, please check here.

Jump to: 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2011 | 2007 | 2006

2018

Larsen, H.; Hemsworth, P. H.; Cronin, G. M.; Gebhardt, Sabine; Smith, C. L.; Rault, J.-L. (2018). Relationship between welfare and individual ranging behaviour in commercial free-range laying hens. Animal genetics, 12(11), pp. 2356-2364. Cambridge University Press 10.1017/S1751731118000022

Ruchti, Sabrina; Meier, Andrea R.; Würbel, Hanno; Kratzer, Gilles; Gebhardt, Sabine; Hartnack, Sonja (2018). Pododermatitis in group housed rabbit does in Switzerland—Prevalence, severity and risk factors. Preventive veterinary medicine, 158, pp. 114-121. Elsevier 10.1016/j.prevetmed.2018.06.011

Taylor, Peta S; Hemsworth, Paul H; Groves, Peter J; Gebhardt, Sabine; Rault, Jean-Loup (2018). Ranging behavior relates to welfare indicators pre- and post-range access in commercial free-range broilers. Poultry Science, 97(6), pp. 1861-1871. Oxford University Press 10.3382/ps/pey060

Gebhardt, Sabine; Toscano, Michael Jeffrey; Würbel, Hanno (2018). Use of aerial perches and perches on aviary tiers by broiler breeders. Applied animal behaviour science, 203, pp. 24-33. Elsevier 10.1016/j.applanim.2018.02.013

Sirovnik, Janja; Stratmann, Ariane; Gebhardt, Sabine; Würbel, Hanno; Toscano, Michael Jeffrey (2018). Feeding from perches in an aviary system reduces aggression and mortality in laying hens. Applied animal behaviour science, 202, pp. 53-62. Elsevier 10.1016/j.applanim.2018.01.005

2017

Gebhardt, Sabine; Toscano, Michael Jeffrey; Würbel, Hanno (2017). Perch use by broiler breeders and its implication on health and production. Poultry Science, 96(10), pp. 3539-3549. Oxford University Press 10.3382/ps/pex189

Candelotto, Laura; Stratmann, Ariane; Gebhardt, Sabine; Rufener, Christina Barbara; van de Braak, Teun; Toscano, Michael Jeffrey (2017). Susceptibility to keel bone fractures in laying hens and the role of genetic variation. Poultry Science, 96(10), pp. 3517-3528. Poultry Science Association 10.3382/ps/pex146

Taylor, Peta S; Hemsworth, Paul H; Groves, Peter J; Gebhardt, Sabine; Rault, Jean-Loup (2017). Ranging Behaviour of Commercial Free-Range Broiler Chickens 1: Factors Related to Flock Variability. Animals, 7(7) MDPI 10.3390/ani7070054

Taylor, Peta S; Hemsworth, Paul H; Groves, Peter J; Gebhardt, Sabine; Rault, Jean-Loup (2017). Ranging Behaviour of Commercial Free-Range Broiler Chickens 2: Individual Variation. Animals, 7(7) MDPI 10.3390/ani7070055

Larsen, Hannah; Cronin, Greg M; Gebhardt, Sabine; Smith, Carolynn L; Hemsworth, Paul H; Rault, Jean-Loup (2017). Individual Ranging Behaviour Patterns in Commercial Free-Range Layers as Observed through RFID Tracking. Animals, 7(3) MDPI 10.3390/ani7030021

2016

Stratmann, Ariane; Frohlich, E K F; Gebhardt, Sabine; Harlander-Matauschek, A.; Würbel, Hanno; Toscano, Michael Jeffrey (2016). Genetic selection to increase bone strength affects prevalence of keel bone damage and egg parameters in commercially housed laying hens. Poultry Science, 95(5), pp. 975-984. Poultry Science Association 10.3382/ps/pew026

Siegford, Janice M.; Berezowski, John Andrew; Biswas, Subir K.; Daigle, Courtney L.; Gebhardt, Sabine; Hernandez, Carlos E.; Thurner, Stefan; Toscano, Michael Jeffrey (2016). Assessing Activity and Location of Individual Laying Hens in Large Groups Using Modern Technology. Animals, 6(2) MDPI 10.3390/ani6020010

Gebhardt-Henrich, Sabine; Stratmann, Ariane (2016). What is causing smothering in laying hens? Veterinary record, 179(10), pp. 250-251. British Veterinary Association 10.1136/vr.i4618

2015

Stratmann, Ariane; Fröhlich, E K; Gebhardt, Sabine; Harlander-Matauschek, Alexandra; Schrader, L; Toscano, Michael Jeffrey; Würbel, Hanno; Gebhardt-Henrich, Sabine (2015). Soft perches in an aviary system reduce incidence of keel bone damage in laying hens. PLoS ONE, 10(3), e0122568. Public Library of Science 10.1371/journal.pone.0122568

Stratmann, Ariane; Fröhlich, E K F; Gebhardt-Henrich, S G; Harlander-Matauschek, Alexandra; Würbel, Hanno; Toscano, Michael Jeffrey (2015). Modification of aviary design reduces incidence of falls, collisions and keel bone damage in laying hens. Applied animal behaviour science, 165, pp. 112-123. Elsevier 10.1016/j.applanim.2015.01.012

LENTFER, T L; PENDL, H; Gebhardt, Sabine; FRÖHLICH, E K F; VON BORELL, E (2015). H/L ratio as a measurement of stress in laying hens - methodology and reliability. British poultry science, 56(2), pp. 157-163. Taylor & Francis 10.1080/00071668.2015.1008993

Gebhardt-Henrich, Sabine; Fröhlich, E K F (2015). Early onset of laying and bumblefoot favor keel bone fractures. Animals, 5(4), pp. 1192-1206. MDPI 10.3390/ani5040406

2014

Gebhardt, Sabine; Toscano, Michael Jeffrey; Fröhlich, Ernst K F (2014). Use of outdoor ranges by laying hens in different sized flocks. Applied animal behaviour science, 155, pp. 74-81. Elsevier 10.1016/j.applanim.2014.03.010

2013

Lentfer, T. L.; Gebhardt-Henrich, Sabine G.; Fröhlich, E. K. F.; von Borell, E. (2013). Nest use is influenced by the positions of nests and drinkers in aviaries. Poultry Science, 92(6), pp. 1433-1442. Oxford University Press 10.3382/ps.2012-02718

2011

Kappeli, S.; Frohlich, E.; Gebhardt-Henrich, S.G.; Pfulg, A.; Schaublin, H.; Zweifel, R.; Wiedmer, H.; Stoffel, Michael Hubert (2011). Effects of dietary supplementation with synthetic vitamin D-3 and 25-hydroxycholecalciferol on blood calcium and phosphate levels and performance in laying hens. Archiv für Geflügelkunde, 75(3), pp. 179-184. Stuttgart: Ulmer

Kappeli, S.; Gebhardt, Sabine; Frohlich, E.; Pfulg, A.; Schaublin, H.; Stoffel, Michael Hubert (2011). Effects of housing, perches, genetics, and 25-hydroxycholecalciferol on keel bone deformities in laying hens. Poultry Science, 90(8), pp. 1637-44. Savoy, Ill.: Oxford University Press 10.3382/ps.2011-01379

Kappeli, S.; Gebhardt, Sabine; Frohlich, E.; Pfulg, A.; Stoffel, Michael Hubert (2011). Prevalence of keel bone deformities in Swiss laying hens. British poultry science, 52(5), pp. 531-6. Abingdon, UK: Taylor & Francis 10.1080/00071668.2011.615059

Eberli, P.; Gebhardt-Henrich, S.G.; Steiger, A. (2011). The influence of handling and exposure to a ferret on body temperature and running wheel activity of golden hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus). Applied animal behaviour science, 131(3-4), pp. 131-137. Amsterdam: Elsevier 10.1016/j.applanim.2011.02.006

Lentfer, T.L.; Gebhardt-Henrich, S.G.; Frohlich, E.K.F.; von Borell, E. (2011). Influence of nest site on the behaviour of laying hens. Applied animal behaviour science, 135(1-2), pp. 70-77. Amsterdam: Elsevier 10.1016/j.applanim.2011.08.016

2007

Gebhardt-Henrich, Sabine G; Fischer, Katerina; Hauzenberger, Andrina R; Keller, Petra; Steiger, Andreas (2007). The duration of capture and restraint during anesthesia and euthanasia influences glucocorticoid levels in male golden hamsters. Lab animal, 36(4), pp. 41-6. New York, N.Y.: Nature Publ. Co. 10.1038/laban0407-41

Gerber, E; Gebhardt-Henrich, S; Steiger, A (2007). Wie beeinflussen die Grösse und Struktur von Unterschlüpfen das Verhalten von weiblichen Goldhamstern (Mesocricetus auratus)? KTBL-Schrift(461), pp. 158-166. Darmstadt: Kuratorium für Technik und Bauwesen in der Landwirtschaft KTBL

Hauzenberger, A; Gebhardt-Henrich, S; Steiger, A (2007). Messung der Aktivität von Goldhamstern mittels dreier automatischer Methoden. KTBL-Schrift(461), pp. 220-221. Darmstadt: Kuratorium für Technik und Bauwesen in der Landwirtschaft KTBL

Paroz, C; Gebhardt-Henrich, S; Steiger, A (2007). Wesensprüfungen bei Hovawart Hunden: Übereinstimmung der Richter und Voraussage über zukünftiges Verhalten. KTBL-Schrift(461), pp. 228-229. Darmstadt: Kuratorium für Technik und Bauwesen in der Landwirtschaft KTBL

Schnegg, A; Gebhardt, S; Keller, P; Visser, GH; Steiger, A (2007). Feeding behaviour an daily energy expenditure of domesticated budgerigars (Melopsittacus undulatus): Influence of type of housing and vertical position of the feeder. Applied animal behaviour science, 108(3-4), pp. 302-312. Amsterdam: Elsevier 10.1016/j.applanim.2007.01.008

2006

Edwards, J F; Gebhardt-Henrich, S; Fischer, K; Hauzenberger, A; Konar, M; Steiger, A (2006). Hereditary hydrocephalus in laboratory-reared golden hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus). Veterinary pathology, 43(4), pp. 523-9. Middleton, Wis.: American College of Veterinary Pathologists 10.1354/vp.43-4-523

Fischer, K; Gebhardt, S; Steiger, A (2006). Behaviour of golden hamsters kept in four different cage sizes. Animal welfare(16), pp. 87-95. Wheathampstead, UK: Universities Federation for Animal Welfare

Gebhardt-Henrich, SG; Steiger, A (2006). Effects of Aviary and Box Sizes on Body Mass and Behaviour of Domesticated Budgerigars (Mesocricetus auratus). Animal welfare(15), pp. 353-358. Wheathampstead, UK: Universities Federation for Animal Welfare

Gebhardt, S; Steiger, A (2006). Körner- versus Pelletfütterung bei Wellensittichen. KTBL-Schrift(448), pp. 203-211. Darmstadt: Kuratorium für Technik und Bauwesen in der Landwirtschaft KTBL

Hauzenberger, A; Gebhardt, S; Steiger, A (2006). the influence of bedding depth on behaviour in golden hamsters (Meoscricetusauratus). Applied animal behaviour science, 100(3-4), pp. 280-294. Amsterdam: Elsevier 10.1016/j.applanim.2005.11.012