Nicole Geberzahn

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In mating systems with social monogamy and obligatory bi-parental care, such as found in many songbird species, male and female fitness depends on the combined parental investment. Hence, both sexes should gain from choosing mates in high rather than low condition. However, theory also predicts that an individual's phenotypic quality can constrain choice,(More)
Birdsong serves to attract mates and to deter territorial rivals. Even though song is not restricted to males, this dual function has almost exclusively been demonstrated for male song. To test the generality of hypotheses on birdsong, we investigated female song in the sex-role reversed, classically polyandrous African black coucal (Centropus grillii) in(More)
When animals live in cities, they have to adjust their behaviour and life histories to novel environments. Noise pollution puts a severe constraint on vocal communication by interfering with the detection of acoustic signals. Recent studies show that city birds sing higher-frequency songs than their conspecifics in non-urban habitats. This has been(More)
In studies of birdsong learning, imitation-based assays of stimulus memorization do not take into account that tutored song types may have been stored, but were not retrieved from memory. Such a 'silent' reservoir of song material could be used later in the bird's life, e.g. during vocal interactions. We examined this possibility in hand-reared nightingales(More)
[Correction Notice: An Erratum for this article was reported in Vol 127(4) of Journal of Comparative Psychology (see record 2013-35936-001). In the article, the title of the article included parenthesis due to an editing error. The title should have been "Song Learning in Male and Female Uraeginthus Cyanocephalus, a Tropical Songbird Species." All versions(More)
In songbirds of the temperate zone, often only males sing and their songs serve to attract females and to deter territorial rivals. In many species, males vary certain aspects of their singing behavior when engaged in territorial interactions. Such variation may be an honest signal of the traits of the signaler, such as fighting strength, condition, or(More)
Songbirds are well known for settling their disputes by vocal signals, and their singing plays a dominant role. Most studies on this issue have concentrated on bird species that develop and use small vocal repertoires. In this article we will go farther and focus on examples of how species with large song repertoires make use of their vocal competence. In(More)
Vocal performance refers to the ability to produce vocal signals close to physical limits. Such motor skills can be used by conspecifics to assess a signaler’s competitive potential. For example it is difficult for birds to produce repeated syllables both rapidly and with a broad frequency bandwidth. Deviation from an upper-bound regression of frequency(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)
(2015) Mismatch in sexual dimorphism of developing song and song control system in blue-capped cordon-bleus, a songbird species with singing females and males. Brain song control regions of adult passerine birds are sexually dimorphic in species such as the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) in which males sing whereas females do not. In many tropical bird(More)