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The evolution of communicative signals involves a major hurdle; signals need to effectively stimulate the sensory systems of their targets. Therefore, sensory specializations of target animals are important sources of selection on signal structure. Here we report the discovery of an animal signal that uses a previously unknown communicative modality,(More)
Animal communication involves very dynamic processes that can generate new uses and functions for established communicative activities. In this article, the authors describe how an aposematic signal, the rattling sound of rattlesnakes (Crotalus viridis), has been exploited by 2 ecological associates of rattlesnakes: (a) California ground squirrels(More)
Scientists from many distinct disciplines often use concepts such as habitat, environment, and niche to describe among other things the physical characteristics of the communicative worlds of animals. Often these descriptions center on the physical characteristics most salient to humans' perceptual systems. In this article, the authors advocate an approach(More)
In this article, we employ robotic/mechatronic squirrel models for the study of ground squirrel/rattlesnake interaction, both in the laboratory and rugged natural environments. These robotic models are unique because they must interact with live, potentially hostile animals. Our robots are now being used for long-term this article, we employ(More)
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