Navigation Links
'Virtual mates' reveal role of romance in parrot calls
Date:8/3/2010

Parrots are famed for their ability to mimic sounds and now researchers have used 'virtual mates' to discover if female parrots judge male contact calls when deciding on a mate. The research, published in Ethology, challenges traditional understandings of the difference between birds 'songs' and 'calls'.

Parrots are among the few species of bird to have developed the ability to quickly learn and mimic new sounds, but the evolutionary reason for this ability is little understood. The Californian based team used a species of budgerigar to discover if the ability to mimic new calls is linked to courtship and mate choice.

"We wanted to know whether a female budgie pays attention to a male's call when she first meets him and if she uses that information when deciding to mate," said senior author Dr Nancy Burley from the University of California. "If so the question is: are females attracted to males that produce calls similar to her own?"

The problem facing the team was that because budgerigars are quick vocal learners a male presented with a female will quickly adapt their call to imitate the female. For the study to be successful it was crucial that the female was able to hear and evaluate the male's call before the male had the chance to adapt his call.

To get around this problem the team developed 'virtual mates' by installing a series of monitors showing videos of male budgerigars dubbed with different calls. Each monitor had a pressure activated perch which would start the clip when the female landed on it.

In each experiment a female was presented with two monitors, each playing the same video but one had been dubbed with a call similar to her own. Budgerigars are intelligent and highly visual animals, yet the females in this experiment readily interacted with the video images as if they were live males.

The results revealed that female budgerigars are attracted to males which produce calls similar to their own call but increase further in similarity during courtship.

Traditionally biologists have focused their research on song birds and it is well established that songs are used by these species to attract mates and defend territory. Researchers have assumed that 'calls' differ to 'songs," however this research challenges that traditional assumption.

"In our study females listen to variations in calls and use that information as a basis for mate choice. This suggests that songs and calls may not be the different categories they have always been thought to be", concluded Burley. "While we don't yet fully understand 'why parrots parrot', we now know that the answer to this question parallels, in some respects, that of 'why birds sing'."


'/>"/>

Contact: Ben Norman
Lifesciencenews@wiley.com
44-124-377-0375
Wiley-Blackwell
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Virtual Global Highlights Top Ten Misconceptions about Cloud Computing
2. Virtual reality and other technologies offer hope
3. New Virtual Program for Parents of Children with ADD / ADHD
4. Virtually Everyone Should Get a Flu Shot: CDC
5. President Obama Gets Virtual Colonoscopy (CT Colonography) But Medicare Denies CTC Coverage to Seniors
6. CT and MRI Images Now Seen in a 3D Virtual Reality World
7. Virtual Dental Home to Provide Care to Underserved Communities in California
8. First Virtual Optical Store Serves Military Personnel
9. China VoIP & Digital Telecom Subsidiary, Beijing PowerUnique Technologies, Wins Virtualization Project Bid for Peking Universitys Third Hospital
10. Virtual colonoscopy allows detection of unsuspected cancers beyond colon
11. Virtual Colonoscopy Catches Cancers Outside the Colon
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
'Virtual mates' reveal role of romance in parrot calls
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... ... PurhealthRX , a leading Health and Nutrition Company, is announcing the ... spectrum CBD oil will revolutionize the rapidly growing CBD market by reducing the amount ... into liquid products, while reducing costs to end users. , The team of researchers ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... with Alzheimer’s or dementia. However, many long-term care insurance companies have a waiver for ... mean is the 90-day elimination period, when the family pays for care, is often ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Yisrayl Hawkins, Pastor and Overseer at The House ... most popular and least understood books in the Holy Scriptures, Revelation. The Book of ... baffled scholars for centuries. Many have tossed it off as mere rubbish, but Yisrayl ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... “America On The Brink”: the Christian history ... The Brink” is the creation of published author, William Nowers. Captain Nowers and ... WWII veteran, he spent thirty years in the Navy. Following his career as ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... The company ... of today’s consumer and regulatory authorities worldwide. From Children’s to Adults 50+, every ... meet the highest standard. , These products are also: Gluten Free, Non-GMO, ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/11/2017)...  Hill-Rom Holdings, Inc. ("Hill-Rom") (NYSE: HRC), today provided ... Piedras, Puerto Rico , where the ... Following a comprehensive onsite ... structural damage, temporary loss of power and minimal water ... manufacturing operations have resumed, and the company expects to ...
(Date:10/4/2017)... 4, 2017  South Korean-based healthcare product Development Company ... "cprCUBE" on Kickstarter. The device will educate the user ... with better efficiency compared to the dated and pricey ... on efficacy of the compression for a more informed ... goal to raise $5,000. ...
(Date:10/2/2017)... -- AllianceRx Walgreens Prime, the combined central specialty pharmacy and ... manager Prime Therapeutics LLC (Prime), today officially began the ... of new signage at its headquarters in ... few other company-owned facilities across the country. This also ... whom will begin to see the AllianceRx Walgreens Prime ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: