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Does acoustic adaptation drive vertical stratification? A test in a tropical cricket assemblage

Jain, Manjari and Balakrishnan, Rohini (2012) Does acoustic adaptation drive vertical stratification? A test in a tropical cricket assemblage. In: Behavioral Ecology, 23 (2). pp. 343-354.

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Official URL: http://beheco.oxfordjournals.org/content/23/2/343

Abstract

In species-rich assemblages, differential utilization of vertical space can be driven by resource availability. For animals that communicate acoustically over long distances under habitat-induced constraints, access to an effective transmission channel is a valuable resource. The acoustic adaptation hypothesis suggests that habitat acoustics imposes a selective pressure that drives the evolution of both signal structure and choice of calling sites by signalers. This predicts that species-specific signals transmit best in native habitats. In this study, we have tested the hypothesis that vertical stratification of calling heights of acoustically communicating species is driven by acoustic adaptation. This was tested in an assemblage of 12 coexisting species of crickets and katydids in a tropical wet evergreen forest. We carried out transmission experiments using natural calls at different heights from the forest floor to the canopy. We measured signal degradation using 3 different measures: total attenuation, signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), and envelope distortion. Different sets of species supported the hypothesis depending on which attribute of signal degradation was examined. The hypothesis was upheld by 5 species for attenuation and by 3 species each for SNR and envelope distortion. Only 1 species of 12 provided support for the hypothesis by all 3 measures of signal degradation. The results thus provided no overall support for acoustic adaptation as a driver of vertical stratification of coexisting cricket and katydid species.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: Copyright of this article belongs to Oxford University Press.
Keywords: acoustic adaptation;attenuation;Ensifera;envelope distortion; SNR;sound transmission;temperature gradient
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Centre for Ecological Sciences
Date Deposited: 20 Apr 2012 12:35
Last Modified: 20 Apr 2012 12:35
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ernet.in/id/eprint/44348

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