THE SOCIAL CONTEXT OF CONTACT CALLS BY ROOKS (CORVUS FRUGILEGUS)

Authors

  • Alexandru MUNTEANU University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine Cluj-Napoca, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine Cluj-Napoca, Discipline of Semiology, Ethology and Diagnostic Imaging
  • Ionel PAPUC University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine Cluj Napoca
  • Ira FEDERSPIEL Sub-Department of Animal Behaviour, Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge
  • Nicola CLAYTON Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Cambridge
  • Nathan EMERY Sub-Department of Animal Behaviour, Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.52331/cvj.v15i1.7

Keywords:

rooks, corvus frugilegus, contact calls, birds, communications

Abstract

Communication is the link between individuals of one species and represents the essence of social life. Vocal communication is one of the most studied forms of information exchange, although it also comes with interspecific barriers that are still tricky to overcome. While we are able to understand the meaning of another human’s words, we fail to understand an animal’s utterances. Among these, bird song has become a field of particular interest. However, little is known yet about many species’ vocalizations, and even less about their significance or how different factors influence them. The presented study establishes the vocal repertoire of a group of rooks and further investigates the importance of contact calls between partners in an experiment. We found that test subjects and other group members produced more contact calls after than before partners had been separated from each other, indicating stress induced by physical isolation and/or the lack of visual contact as an important factor influencing the call frequency. Separating certain individuals seemed to affect the group differently, which indicates that the ‘importance’ of the animal to the group influences the group call rate. In this study, we have shown how social and environmental factors play a role in vocal communication in birds.

References

AveyM.T.,QuinceA.F.&SturdyC.B.2008.Seasonalanddiurnalpatternsofblack-cappedchickadee (Poecile atricapillus) vocal production. Behavioural Processes, 77, 149-155.

Catchpole, C. K. & Slater P. J. B. 2008. Bird song. Biological themes and variations. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Enggist-Duebelin, P. & Pfister, U. 2002. Cultural transmission of vocalizations in ravens, Corvus corax. Animal Behaviour, 64, 831-841.

Goodwin D. 1949. Notes on voice and display of the jay. British Birds, 42, 278-287

Grzimek B. 2002. Crows and Jays. In: Grzimek’s Animal Life Encyclopedia, 2nd edition, vol. 11, Birds IV, pp. 503-511. (Ed by M. Hutchins, J. A. Jackson, W. J. Bock & D. Olendorf) Farmington Hills, MI: Gale Group.

Gwinner, E. & Kneutgen, J., 1962. Über die biologische Bedeutung der "zweckdienlichen" Anwendung erlernter Laute bei Vögeln. Zeitschrift fur Tierpsychologie, 19, 692-696

Hardy, J. W. 1979. Vocal repertoire and its possible evolution in the Black and Blue Jays (Cissilopha). The Wilson Bulletin, 91, 187-201.

Hughes A. L. 2008. Temporal pattern of vocalization type usage in singing sessions of male tyrant flycatchers (Tyrannidae). Journal of Avian Biology, 39, 24-29.

Lemasson, A. & Hausberger, M., 2004. Patterns of vocal sharing and social dynamics in a captive group of Campbell's monkeys (Cercopithecus campbelli). Journal of Comparative Psychology, 118, 347-359.

Long, C. V. 2007. Vocalisations of the degu Octodon degus, a social caviomorph rodent. Bioacoustics, 16, 223-244.

Mitani, J.C. and J. Gros-Louis., 1998. Chorusing and call convergence in chimpanzees: Tests of three hypotheses. Behaviour 135. 1041-1064.

Mitani, J. C. & Brandt, K. L. 1994. Social factors influence the acoustic variability in the long-distance calls of male chimpanzees. Ethology, 96, 233-252.

Mitani, J.C. and T. Nishida. 1993. Contexts and social correlates of long distance calling by male chimpanzees. Animal Behaviour 45, 735-746.

McGregor, P. K. 2005. Introduction. In: Animal communication networks. pp. ix-xi. (Ed. by P. McGregor) Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Morton, E.S., Geitgey, M. S. & McGrath, S., 1978. Responses to apparent female adultery. American Naturalist 112, 968-971

Nagel, T. 1974. What Is It Like to Be a Bat? The Philosophical Review, 83, 435-450.

Norcross J.L., Newman J.D., Cofrancesco L.M. 1999. Context and sex differences exist in the acoustic structure of phee calls by newly-paired common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus). American Journal of Primatology, 49, 165-181.

Oberweger, K. & Goller, F. 2001. The metabolic cost of birdsong production. Journal of Experimental Biology, 204, 3379-3388.

Quine, W. V. 1973. On the reasons for the indeterminacy of translation. Journal of Philosophy, 12, 178-183.

Ritchison, G., 1983: Possible "deceptive" use of song by female black-headed grosbeaks. Condor 85, 250-251

Ryan, M.J. & Brenowitz, A.E. 1985. The Role of Body Size, Phylogeny, and Ambient Noise in the Evolution of Bird Song. The American Naturalist, 126, 87.

Seed, A., Clayton, N. S. & Emery, N. J. 2007. Postconflict third-party affiliation in rooks, Corvus frugilegus. Current Biology, 17, 157-158.

Snowdon, C. T. & Elowson, A. M., 1999. Pygmy marmosets modify call structure when paired. Ethology, 105, 893-908.

Struhsaker T. T. 1967. Behavior of Vervet Monkeys and other Cercopithecines, Science, 156, 1197. 25.Ward S., Lampe H. M. & Slater P. J. B. 2004. Singing is not energetically demanding for pied flycatchers,

Ficedula hypoleuca. Behavioural Ecology, 15, 477–484. 26.Waite, E.R., 1903. Sympathetic song in birds. Nature 68, 322

Downloads

Published

2009-03-16

How to Cite

“THE SOCIAL CONTEXT OF CONTACT CALLS BY ROOKS (CORVUS FRUGILEGUS)” (2009) Cluj Veterinary Journal, 15(1), pp. 34–44. doi:10.52331/cvj.v15i1.7.