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Latest Zoomusicology Stories

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2010-08-03 09:12:06

Blue whales are able to synchronize the pitch of their calls with an extremely high level of accuracy, and a very slim margin of error from call to call, according to a new study of the blue whale population in the eastern North Pacific. Results were published in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. The authors suggest that the uniform pitch used by blue whale populations could allow individual whales to locate potential mates by swimming toward them or away from them. "Blue...

c1a34d4b0b71e6de1fed51748523c5071
2010-06-30 07:31:25

Wide range of pitch is due to vocal muscles more than air pressure Female zebra finches don't sing but make one-note, low-pitch calls. Males sing over a wide range of frequencies. University of Utah scientists discovered how: The males' stronger vocal muscles, not the pressure of air flowing through their lungs, lets them sing from the B note above middle C all the way to a whistle beyond the high end of a piano keyboard. "You have two variables "“ air pressure and muscle activity...

4f369441abd8a269150eebaf9c41c6ad1
2008-12-20 15:05:00

To many people, bird song can herald the coming of spring, reveal what kind of bird is perched nearby or be merely an unwelcome early morning intrusion. But to Sandra Vehrencamp, Cornell professor of neurobiology and behavior, bird song is a code from which to glean insights into avian behavior. Birds use song systems to communicate about mating and reproduction, territorial boundaries, age and even overall health. Vehrencamp studies them to decode which elements convey such essential...

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2008-05-02 00:55:00

Baby songbirds begin learning to mimic sounds from nature by babbling, researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology said. The group, which is studying birds and humans to determine how they learn new behaviors, found that immature and adult birdsongs are driven by two separate brain pathways, rather than one that constantly matures.Damage to the first circuit while the bird is still learning prevents further learning, so the song remains immature, researchers said."Birds start out...

2007-12-06 10:59:13

Humpback whales may sing not to court mates but to help explore the seas around them. When a male humpback moves someplace new, he changes his song to match those coming from other nearby whales. "The traditional explanation for why whales do this is that male whales are singing to seduce female whales, and that females get really turned on by songs that are currently in style," said cognitive neuroscientist Eduardo Mercado III of the State University of New York in Buffalo. "A song...

76639b8919fbebdf6fbc59ea45f65ede1
2006-03-30 07:15:00

The songs of the humpback whale are among the most complex in the animal kingdom. Researchers have now mathematically confirmed that whales have their own syntax that uses sound units to build phrases that can be combined to form songs that last for hours. Until now, only humans have demonstrated the ability to use such a hierarchical structure of communication. The research, published online in the March 2006 issue of the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, offers a new approach...

4b94a56d92f7af7c508efc190e619c7d1
2004-12-09 08:22:04

They store songs as snippets, then sing whole tune, study finds HealthDayNews -- Scientists taught baby sparrows to sing a complete bird song after exposing them only to overlapping segments of the song, in the process discovering how the birds store musical memories. The findings might provide clues to human language development, the researchers said. "We've known for a long time that birds are able to -- in fact, require -- tutoring with a song in order to produce it," said study author...


Word of the Day
bibliopole
  • A bookseller; now, especially, a dealer in rare and curious books.
This word comes from a Greek phrase meaning 'book seller.'
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