Johns Hopkins University experimenter Shreesh Mysore’s project titled “Multisensory Competition and Spatial Selection: Neural Circuit and Computational Mechanisms” MUST BE STOPPED. For this project, Mysore imprisons barn owls in a laboratory, inserts electrodes into their brains, restrains some of them while fully conscious for up to 12 hours at a time, and records their neural activity while they’re forced to look at dots on a TV monitor or listen to bursts of noise delivered through earphones.
Johns Hopkins has been explicit in its acknowledgement that owls are used for these studies because their “midbrain is organized in a way that makes it relatively easy to track the activity of specific neurons.” In other words, the use of this species has little to do with sound science and everything to do with convenience.
Furthermore, Mysore has publicly acknowledged that experimenting on owls whose heads are surgically fixed in place could “change the way the brain is solving problems and we might misinterpret what’s happening, or misunderstand, if we do this in head-fixed animals.” Yet in his experiments, he attaches bolts to owls’ skulls in order to hold their heads in a fixed position, thereby rendering his data worthless.
In addition, public records obtained by PETA indicate that Mysore appears to have violated Maryland law by failing to obtain a legally required permit from 2015 to 2018 to possess barn owls for use in his experiments.
Given the lack of scientific validity, the possible violation of law, and the cruel nature of these experiments, I urge you to help end them by signing this petition. Remember, EVERY SIGNATURE MATTERS!
Thank you for your attention to this important matter. Please share this petition with 10 other people to raise awareness and save these adorable barn owls.