R. Matthias Hennig

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Many different invertebrate and vertebrate species use acoustic communication for pair formation. In the cricket Gryllus bimaculatus, females recognize their species-specific calling song and localize singing males by positive phonotaxis. The song pattern of males has a clear structure consisting of brief and regular pulses that are grouped into repetitive(More)
Sensory systems adapt their neural code to changes in the sensory environment, often on multiple time scales. Here, we report a new form of adaptation in a first-order auditory interneuron (AN2) of crickets. We characterize the response of the AN2 neuron to amplitude-modulated sound stimuli and find that adaptation shifts the stimulus-response curves toward(More)
Many animals produce pulse-like signals during acoustic communication. These signals exhibit structure on two time scales: they consist of trains of pulses that are often broadcast in packets—so called chirps. Temporal parameters of the pulse and of the chirp are decisive for female preference. Despite these signals being produced by animals from many(More)
The songs of many insects exhibit precise timing as the result of repetitive and stereotyped subunits on several time scales. As these signals encode the identity of a species, time and timing are important for the recognition system that analyzes these signals. Crickets are a prominent example as their songs are built from sound pulses that are broadcast(More)
Grasshoppers and crickets independently evolved hearing organs and acoustic communication. They differ considerably in the organization of their auditory pathways, and the complexity of their songs, which are essential for mate attraction. Recent approaches aimed at describing the behavioral preference functions of females in both taxa by a simple modeling(More)
Hearing in insects serves to gain information in the context of mate finding, predator avoidance or host localization. For these goals, the auditory pathways of insects represent the computational substrate for object recognition and localization. Before these higher level computations can be executed in more central parts of the nervous system, the signals(More)
In crickets acoustic communication serves mate selection. Female crickets have to perceive and integrate male cues relevant for mate choice while confronted with several different signals in an acoustically diverse background. Overall female decisions are based on the attractiveness of the temporal pattern (informative about the ‘what’) and on signal(More)
Predicting the response to selection is at the core of evolutionary biology. Presently, thorough understanding of the effects of selection on the multivariate phenotype is lacking, in particular for behavioral traits. Here, we compared multivariate acoustic mating signals among seven field cricket species contrasting two selection regimes: (1) species(More)
In many communication systems, information is encoded in the temporal pattern of signals. For rhythmic signals that carry information in specific frequency bands, a neuronal system may profit from tuning its inherent filtering properties towards a peak sensitivity in the respective frequency range. The cricket Gryllus bimaculatus evaluates acoustic(More)
The senses of animals are confronted with changing environments and different contexts. Neural adaptation is one important tool to adjust sensitivity to varying intensity ranges. For instance, in a quiet night outdoors, our hearing is more sensitive than when we are confronted with the plurality of sounds in a large city during the day. However, adaptation(More)