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Lizards speed up visual displays in noisy motion habitats

Ord, Terry J; Peters, Richard; Clucas, Barbara; Stamps, Judy A

Description

Extensive research over the last few decades has revealed that many acoustically communicating animals compensate for the masking effect of background noise by changing the structure of their signals. Familiar examples include birds using acoustic properties that enhance the transmission of vocalizations in noisy habitats. Here, we show that the effects of background noise on communication signals are not limited to the acoustic modality, and that visual noise from windblown vegetation has an...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorOrd, Terry J
dc.contributor.authorPeters, Richard
dc.contributor.authorClucas, Barbara
dc.contributor.authorStamps, Judy A
dc.date.accessioned2015-12-10T22:34:53Z
dc.identifier.issn0962-8452
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/56059
dc.description.abstractExtensive research over the last few decades has revealed that many acoustically communicating animals compensate for the masking effect of background noise by changing the structure of their signals. Familiar examples include birds using acoustic properties that enhance the transmission of vocalizations in noisy habitats. Here, we show that the effects of background noise on communication signals are not limited to the acoustic modality, and that visual noise from windblown vegetation has an equally important influence on the production of dynamic visual displays. We found that two species of Puerto Rican lizard, Anolis cristatellus and A. gundlachi, increase the speed of body movements used in territorial signalling to apparently improve communication in visually 'noisy' environments of rapidly moving vegetation. This is the first evidence that animals change how they produce dynamic visual signals when communicating in noisy motion habitats. Taken together with previous work on acoustic communication, our results show that animals with very different sensory ecologies can face similar environmental constraints and adopt remarkably similar strategies to overcome these constraints.
dc.publisherRoyal Society of London
dc.sourceProceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B: Biological Sciences
dc.subjectKeywords: background level; behavioral ecology; environmental constraint; habitat quality; lizard; movement; sensory system; signaling; territoriality; vocalization; adaptation; animal communication; animal experiment; Anolis cristatellus; Anolis gundlachi; article Animal communication; Anolis; Background noise; Signal detection; Territorial displays
dc.titleLizards speed up visual displays in noisy motion habitats
dc.typeJournal article
local.description.notesImported from ARIES
local.identifier.citationvolume274
dc.date.issued2007
local.identifier.absfor060201 - Behavioural Ecology
local.identifier.ariespublicationu9204316xPUB349
local.type.statusPublished Version
local.contributor.affiliationOrd, Terry J, University of California
local.contributor.affiliationPeters, Richard, College of Medicine, Biology and Environment, ANU
local.contributor.affiliationClucas, Barbara, University of California
local.contributor.affiliationStamps, Judy A, University of California
local.description.embargo2037-12-31
local.bibliographicCitation.startpage1057
local.bibliographicCitation.lastpage1062
local.identifier.doi10.1098/rspb.2006.0263
dc.date.updated2015-12-09T10:23:54Z
local.identifier.scopusID2-s2.0-34447343763
CollectionsANU Research Publications

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