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This study on common marmosets Callithrix jacchus is the first to examine noise-dependent mechanisms of vocal plasticity in a New World monkey. Since acoustic communication can be considerably impaired by environmental noise, some animals have evolved adaptations to counteract its masking effects. The studied marmosets increased the sound level of their(More)
Primates acquire knowledge about relationships of third parties and group structure by monitoring their conspecifics. We show that Barbary macaques (Macaca sylvanus) utter specific vocalizations while monitoring interactions of other group members. As they did not direct other behaviours to the interacting group members, we provisionally termed these(More)
There is growing evidence that, during song learning, birds do not only acquire 'what to sing' (the inventory of behavior), but also 'how to sing' (the singing program), including order-features of song sequencing. Common Nightingales Luscinia megarhynchos acquire such serial information by segmenting long strings of heard songs into smaller subsets or(More)
Human language and speech are unique accomplishments. Nevertheless, they share a number of characteristics with other systems of communication, and investigators have thus compared them to birdsong and the vocal signaling of nonhuman primates. Particular interesting parallels concern the development of singing and speaking. These behaviors rely on auditory(More)
Among the many variable sounds in human laughter, vocalizations often contain series of vocal elements of similar acoustic properties. This study aims to elucidate whether such element series contain trajectories of changes in acoustic parameters that might be used to encode information, e.g. on the state of the signaller. We recorded bouts of laughter of(More)
Vocal interactions in songbirds can be used as a model system to investigate the interplay of intrinsic singing programmes (e.g. influences from vocal memories) and external variables (e.g. social factors). When characterizing vocal interactions between territorial rivals two aspects are important: (1) the timing of songs in relation to the conspecific's(More)
Exposure to laughter has striking effects on human listeners and may facilitate positive emotional and behavioural responses. The acoustic signal pattern of laughter vocalisations is particularly suitable to elicit these reactions. However, little is known about factors that lead to differences in reactions of listeners. The acoustic quality of laughter,(More)
Field studies in various species of Macaca (Cercopithecidae) provided evidence for specific visual displays that typically accompany playful interactions. The aim of our study was to examine whether and when playing individuals would use auditory displays, i.e. vocalizations that often occur during social play as well. The study was conducted on a(More)