Document Detail

Naturalistic psychophysics: thresholds of ducklings (Anas platyrynchos) and chicks (Gallus gallus) to tones that resemble mallard calls.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  3720286     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Neonatal ducklings and chickens were tested for responsiveness to a pulsing pure tone that was as similar as possible to the mallard maternal alarm call. It is known that ducklings momentarily cease vocalizing when they hear the alarm call and that chicks do the same when they hear pure tones. The duration of peep suppression can thus be used as a measure of whether subjects of either species heard the stimulus. Chicks might not be as sensitive as ducklings to a mallard alarm call because the signal is less significant to them. An adaptive or staircase procedure was used to estimate absolute thresholds, and group psychometric functions were reconstructed for each species from the trial-by-trial data. Ducklings had lower thresholds than chickens as well as steeper psychometric functions to this stimulus. The results suggest that more sensitive and consistent behavioral responses can be elicited by naturalistic sounds than by more arbitrary acoustic stimuli.
L Gray; R Jahrsdoerfer
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of comparative psychology (Washington, D.C. : 1983)     Volume:  100     ISSN:  0735-7036     ISO Abbreviation:  J Comp Psychol     Publication Date:  1986 Jun 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1986-07-25     Completed Date:  1986-07-25     Revised Date:  2007-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8309850     Medline TA:  J Comp Psychol     Country:  UNITED STATES    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  91-4     Citation Subset:  IM    
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MeSH Terms
Auditory Threshold*
Pitch Discrimination*
Vocalization, Animal*
Grant Support

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