Tree frogs deceived predators choral singing

Wood smileski snub-nosed frog (Smilisca sila) almost perfect sinhroniziruete their mating songs with the sounds of other dogs. Thus, they create an auditory illusion and disguise their signals from predators (bats) and parasites (mosquitoes) — they react to the leading sound and ignore repeats it. Female smiliar learned to recognize illusion: they are equally interested in both voices in a duet. Article published in the journal The American naturalist is.

In different animals, there are mating signals by which males attract females. However, these signals can see not only relatives, but also predators and parasites: eavesdropping marriage messages, they find their victims. The latter, in turn, are in a variety of lengths to hide their signals: for example, communicate via ultraviolet light, which does not see predators.

When two audio signal closely synchronized, usually animals (including people) will recognize only the first, high-end sound. Even if the signal sources are located in different places, individuals think that these sounds emanate from a single point. Because of this effect, females prefer males whose mating sounds ahead of others, and males ensure that their song not overlap with competitors. However, the same auditory illusion of animals can use to conceal their signals from predators.

Mating signals of snub-nosed smiliar (Smilisca sila), frogs of the family of tree frogs, almost perfectly synced with the songs of congeners. The same signals that attract bats fromcategory of listoedov (Trachops cirrhosus), which eat the frogs. In addition, the signals also attract mosquitoes Corethrella — in previous work, the researchers foundthat listeasy and mosquitoes attack more on those frogs that sing asynchronously.

Biologists from Panama and the United States under the leadership of Henry Leggett (Legett Henry) from Purdue University suggested that smileski chorus to mask their mating signals from predators and parasites. To test the hypothesis, the scientists simulated two synchronously singing males: included recording the songs of frogs using two speakers with a delay in 79 milliseconds and put the device at a distance from each other. Gave the records to listen to lastanosa and females smiliar and also included in the forest and placed next to the speakers mosquito traps. The control group consisted of females whistleblowers, or toothy frogs (Engystomops pustulosus), which are not sinhroniziruete their signals in nature. They were allowed to listen to records of relatives, who have synchronized the same way as songs of smiliar.

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