Birdsongs keep pace with city life: changes in song over time in an urban songbird affects communication

@article{Luther2012BirdsongsKP,
  title={Birdsongs keep pace with city life: changes in song over time in an urban songbird affects communication},
  author={David A. Luther and Elizabeth Perrault Derryberry},
  journal={Animal Behaviour},
  year={2012},
  volume={83},
  pages={1059-1066}
}
Animals in urban environments often must adjust their vocalizations to be heard over the din of anthropogenic ambient noise. [...] Key Method To test whether this change in song affects receiver response, we presented territorial males current (2005) and historical (1969) local songs. Males responded more strongly to current than to historical songs, suggesting that current songs communicate more effectively in the current local environment. The results suggest that behavioural adjustment to anthropogenic…Expand

Figures and Tables from this paper

Higher songs of city birds may not be an individual response to noise
TLDR
The results challenge the common view of vocal adjustments by city birds, and suggest that either noise itself is not the causal force driving the divergence of song frequency between urban and forest populations, or that noise induces population-wide changes over a time scale of several generations rather than causing changes in individual behaviour. Expand
Not so sexy in the city: urban birds adjust songs to noise but compromise vocal performance
TLDR
Reduced bandwidth and performance could be the reason that urban birds are less responsive to songs adjusted for anthropogenic noise, which could result in fewer mating opportunities and more challenges in defending their territory. Expand
Anthropogenic noise affects winter song structure of a long-distance migrant, Gambel’s white-crowned sparrow
Many animals learn to produce acoustic signals that are used to attract mates and defend territories. The structure of these signals can be influenced by external features of the environment,Expand
Social context and noise affect within and between male song adjustments in a common passerine
Across populations, animals that inhabit areas with high anthropogenic noise produce vocalizations that differ from those inhabiting less noisy environments. Such patterns may be due to individualsExpand
Eastern Bluebirds Alter their Song in Response to Anthropogenic Changes in the Acoustic Environment.
TLDR
It is suggested that human habitats provide an ideal setting in which to perform experiments on communication strategies, with resulting data poised to reveal underlying evolutionary processes while also informing conservation and management. Expand
Can animals detect differences in vocalizations adjusted for anthropogenic noise?
TLDR
Responses of free-living male northern cardinals to computer-generated songs that mimicked the population's average minimum-frequency song and songs that had been shifted to have a higher minimum frequency are investigated, which could have important consequences for mate selection and resource defence among populations in urban areas. Expand
Urban birdsongs: higher minimum song frequency of an urban colonist persists in a common garden experiment
TLDR
These results are the first to show that frequency shifts in urban birdsong are maintained in the absence of noise by genetic evolution and/or early life experiences and some song sharing between the common garden and natal field populations. Expand
Urban sparrows respond to a sexually selected trait with increased aggression in noise
TLDR
It is suggested that noise affects male responsiveness to song, possibly leading to more territorial conflict in urban areas, and this song phenotype potentially increases transmission distance in noise, but elicits weaker responses from competitors. Expand
Signal information of bird song changes in human-dominated landscapes
TLDR
This is one of few studies to investigate signal relationships and potential fitness consequences of song variation in natural urban systems, thereby providing insight into micro-evolutionary processes operating within novel environments. Expand
Urban birdsongs: higher minimum song frequency of an urban colonist persists in a common garden experiment
TLDR
These results are the first to show that frequency shifts in urban birdsong are maintained in the absence of noise by genetic evolution and/or early life experiences. Expand
...
1
2
3
4
5
...

References

SHOWING 1-10 OF 53 REFERENCES
Urban noise and the cultural evolution of bird songs
TLDR
It is found that the minimum frequency of songs increased both within and between dialects during the 30-year time span, suggesting that one mechanism that influences how dialects, and cultural traits in general, are selected and transmitted from one generation to the next is the dialect's ability to be effectively communicated in the local environment. Expand
Birds and Anthropogenic Noise: Are Urban Songs Adaptive?
TLDR
It is found that frequency changes of urban songs are not very effective in mitigating masking from traffic noise, and an increase in vocal pitch increased communication distance only marginally, while vocal amplitude adjustments had a strong and significantly larger effect. Expand
Blackbirds sing higher-pitched songs in cities: adaptation to habitat acoustics or side-effect of urbanization?
When animals colonize cities they often have to adapt their physiology, life history and behaviour to the novel environment. Songbirds rely on acoustic communication for reproduction, and recentExpand
Effects of urban noise on song and response behaviour in great tits
TLDR
There is a difference in spectral aspects of rural and urban song in a common passerine, the great tit Parus major, at 20 sites across the UK and this is the first demonstration that such environmentally induced differences in song influence the response of male territory holders. Expand
A behavioural mechanism explaining noise-dependent frequency use in urban birdsong
Acoustic signals are usually very effective in long-distance communication. However, in many habitats animals suffer more and more from signal interference caused by traffic-generated low-frequencyExpand
Cities Change the Songs of Birds
TLDR
It is shown that songs that are important to mate attraction and territory defense have significantly diverged in great tits (Parus major), a very successful urban species, and provides the most consistent evidence supporting the acoustic-adaptation hypothesis since it was postulated in the early seventies. Expand
Low-frequency songs lose their potency in noisy urban conditions
TLDR
It is experimentally shown that urban noise conditions impair male–female communication and that signal efficiency depends on song frequency in the presence of noise, and that low-frequency songs by males are related to female fertility as well as sexual fidelity. Expand
The impact of environmental noise on song amplitude in a territorial bird
Summary 1. The impact of environmental background noise on the performance of territorial songs was examined in free-ranging nightingales ( Luscinia megarhynchos Brehm). An analysis of sound pressureExpand
Noise-dependent song amplitude regulation in a territorial songbird
Abstract Some animals that use sound to communicate compensate for interference from background noise by adjusting the amplitude of their vocalizations as environmental noise levels vary. TerritorialExpand
Habitat-dependent acoustic divergence affects playback response in urban and forest populations of the European blackbird
Habitat-dependent song variation could play a role in ecological speciation from the incipient stages until completion of reproductive isolation. The evolutionarily novel urban habitat provides anExpand
...
1
2
3
4
5
...