Document Detail

Bilateral coordination and the motor basis of female preference for sexual signals in canary song.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  22875764     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The preference of female songbirds for particular traits in the songs of courting males has received considerable attention, but the relationship of preferred traits to male quality is poorly understood. Female domestic canaries (Serinus canaria, Linnaeus) preferentially solicit copulation with males that sing special high repetition rate, wide-band, multi-note syllables, called 'sexy' or A-syllables. Syllables are separated by minibreaths but each note is produced by pulsatile expiration, allowing high repetition rates and long duration phrases. The wide bandwidth is achieved by including two notes produced sequentially on opposite sides of the syrinx, in which the left and right sides are specialized for low or high frequencies, respectively. The emphasis of low frequencies is facilitated by a positive relationship between syllable repetition rate and the bandwidth of the fundamental frequency of notes sung by the left syrinx, such that bandwidth increases with increasing syllable repetition rate. The temporal offset between notes prevents cheating by unilaterally singing a note on the left side with a low fundamental frequency and prominent higher harmonics. The syringeal and respiratory motor patterns by which sexy syllables are produced support the hypothesis that these syllables provide a sensitive vocal-auditory indicator of a male's performance limit for the rapid, precisely coordinated interhemispheric switching, which is essential for many sensory and motor processes involving specialized contributions from each cerebral hemisphere.
Roderick A Suthers; Eric Vallet; Michel Kreutzer
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Journal of experimental biology     Volume:  215     ISSN:  1477-9145     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Exp. Biol.     Publication Date:  2012 Sep 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-08-09     Completed Date:  2012-12-12     Revised Date:  2013-09-03    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0243705     Medline TA:  J Exp Biol     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  2950-9     Citation Subset:  IM    
Medical Science and Department of Biology, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Canaries / physiology*
Exhalation / physiology
Mating Preference, Animal / physiology*
Motor Activity / physiology*
Vocalization, Animal / physiology*
Grant Support

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