Heterospecific alarm call recognition in a non-vocal reptile

Maren N. Vitousek*, James S. Adelman, Nathan C. Gregory, James J. H. St Clair

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

83 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The ability to recognize and respond to the alarm calls of heterospecifics has previously been described only in species with vocal communication. Here we provide evidence that a non-vocal reptile, the Galapagos marine iguana ( Amblyrhynchus cristatus), can eavesdrop on the alarm call of the Gala pagos mockingbird ( Nesomimus parvulus) and respond with anti-predator behaviour. Eavesdropping on complex heterospecific communications demonstrates a remarkable degree of auditory discrimination in a non-vocal species.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)632-634
Number of pages3
JournalBiology Letters
Volume3
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 22 Dec 2007

Keywords

  • DESIGN
  • SYSTEMS
  • eavesdropping
  • MOBBING CALLS
  • COMMUNICATION
  • marine iguanas
  • RESPONSES
  • animal communication
  • heterospecific recognition
  • PREDATORS

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