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A suboscine bird (eastern phoebe, Sayornis phoebe) develops normal song without auditory feedback

Kroodsma, Donald E. and Konishi, Masakazu (1991) A suboscine bird (eastern phoebe, Sayornis phoebe) develops normal song without auditory feedback. Animal Behaviour, 42 (3). pp. 477-487. ISSN 0003-3472. doi:10.1016/S0003-3472(05)80047-8.

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Imitative song development, its requisite auditory feedback, and the underlying neural control of learned song are becoming increasingly well known in songbirds, but the evolution of these characteristics from songbird ancestors is poorly understood. Suboscine flycatchers, which belong to the evolutionary sister group of the oscine songbirds (in the same order, Passeriformes), are thought not to imitate songs from other individuals. This study therefore examines the role of auditory feedback in song development and provides preliminary comments on neural control. Four eastern phoebes, Sayornis phoebe, were collected at 10–12 days of age and hand-reared in the laboratory; at approximately 35 days of age, before they began to sing, the birds were bilaterally deafened by removal of the cochlea. Songs of these phoebes, two males and two females, were judged to be normal when compared with songs of males recorded in nature and to songs of laboratory-reared, intact males and females. Like several non-passerines (representatives of Galliformes and Columbiformes), the eastern phoebe requires no auditory feedback for normal vocal development. Brain sections of phoebes contain no obvious cell clusters like the forebrain song nuclei of songbirds. If some of these nuclei mediate auditory feedback control of song development, the apparent absence of these nuclei in the phoebe is consistent with its ability to develop normal song without auditory feedback.

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Additional Information:© 1991 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour. Received 15 October 1990; initial acceptance 12 November 1990; final acceptance 14 February 1991; MS. number: A5898. This work was supported by an NSF grant to D.E.K. (BNS-8812084) and a grant from the McKnight Endowment Fund for Neuroscience to M.K. We thank M. Kroodsma for hand-rearing efforts, S. Johnson and J. Wells for help with recording and analyses, E. Akutagawa for histology, M. Sutherland for statistical advice and S. Johnson and I. Pepperberg for a critical reading of a manuscript draft. Birds were collected under appropriate Massachusetts state permit (SCB07-89) and federal permit (PRT-672911).
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McKnight FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:3
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20151124-145147227
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ID Code:62394
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:25 Nov 2015 18:17
Last Modified:10 Nov 2021 23:01

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