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      Interspecific variation of warning calls in piranhas: a comparative analysis

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          Abstract

          Fish sounds are known to be species-specific, possessing unique temporal and spectral features. We have recorded and compared sounds in eight piranha species to evaluate the potential role of acoustic communication as a driving force in clade diversification. All piranha species showed the same kind of sound-producing mechanism: sonic muscles originate on vertebrae and attach to a tendon surrounding the bladder ventrally. Contractions of the sound-producing muscles force swimbladder vibration and dictate the fundamental frequency. It results the calling features of the eight piranha species logically share many common characteristics. In all the species, the calls are harmonic sounds composed of multiple continuous cycles. However, the sounds of Serrasalmus elongatus (higher number of cycles and high fundamental frequency) and S. manueli (long cycle periods and low fundamental frequency) are clearly distinguishable from the other species. The sonic mechanism being largely conserved throughout piranha evolution, acoustic communication can hardly be considered as the main driving force in the diversification process. However, sounds of some species are clearly distinguishable despite the short space for variations supporting the need for specific communication. Behavioural studies are needed to clearly understand the eventual role of the calls during spawning events.

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          Most cited references27

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          Bird song, ecology and speciation.

          The study of bird song dialects was once considered the most promising approach for investigating the role of behaviour in reproductive divergence and speciation. However, after a series of studies yielding conflicting results, research in the field slowed significantly. Recent findings, on how ecological factors may lead to divergence in both song and morphology, necessitate a re-examination. We focus primarily on species with learned song, examine conflicting results in the literature and propose some potential new directions for future studies. We believe an integrative approach, including an examination of the role of ecology in divergent selection, is essential for gaining insight into the role of song in the evolution of assortative mating. Habitat-dependent selection on both song and fitness-related characteristics can lead to parallel divergence in these traits. Song may, therefore, provide females with acoustic cues to find males that are most fit for a particular habitat. In analysing the role of song learning in reproductive divergence, we focus on post-dispersal plasticity in a conceptual framework. We argue that song learning may initially constrain reproductive divergence, while in the later stages of population divergence it may promote speciation.
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            Empirical refinements applicable to the recording of fish sounds in small tanks.

            Many underwater bioacoustical recording experiments (e.g., fish sound production during courtship or agonistic encounters) are usually conducted in a controlled laboratory environment of small-sized tanks. The effects of reverberation, resonance, and tank size on the characteristics of sound recorded inside small tanks have never been fully addressed, although these factors are known to influence the recordings. In this work, 5-cycle tone bursts of 1-kHz sound were used as a test signal to investigate the sound recorded in a 170-l rectangular glass tank at various depths and distances from a transducer. The dominant frequency, sound-pressure level, and power spectrum recorded in small tanks were significantly distorted compared to the original tone bursts. Due to resonance, the dominant frequency varied with water depth, and power spectrum level of the projected frequency decreased exponentially with increased distance between the hydrophone and the sound source; however, the resonant component was nearly uniform throughout the tank. Based on the empirical findings and theoretical calculation, a working protocol is presented that minimizes distortion in fish sound recordings in small tanks. To validate this approach, sounds produced by the croaking gourami (Trichopsis vittata) during staged agonistic encounters were recorded according to the proposed protocol in an 1800-l circular tank and in a 37-l rectangular tank to compare differences in acoustic characteristics associated with tank size and recording position. The findings underscore pitfalls associated with recording fish sounds in small tanks. Herein, an empirical solution to correct these distortions is provided.
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              Patterns of advertisement call evolution in toads and chorus frogs

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Sci Rep
                Sci Rep
                Scientific Reports
                Nature Publishing Group
                2045-2322
                26 October 2016
                2016
                : 6
                : 36127
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Laboratoire de Morphologie Fonctionnelle et Evolutive, Institut de Chimie, Bât. B6c, Université de Liège , B-4000 Liège, Belgium
                [2 ]HYDRECO Guyane, Laboratoire Environnement de Petit Saut , B.P. 823-97388 Kourou Cedex, French Guiana
                [3 ]Département de Biologie, Ecologie et Evolution, AFFISH Research Center, Université de Liège, Institut de Zoologie , 22 quai Van Beneden, B-4020 Liège, Belgium
                Author notes
                Article
                srep36127
                10.1038/srep36127
                5080574
                27782184
                780100f4-78b1-412f-93b9-614d0137a099
                Copyright © 2016, The Author(s)

                This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

                History
                : 18 August 2016
                : 10 October 2016
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