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Auditory scene analysis in estrildid finches (Taeniopygia guttata and Lonchura striata domestica): a species advantage for detection of conspecific song.

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of Comparative and Physiological Psychology
0021-9940
Publisher
American Psychological Association
Publication Date
Volume
114
Issue
2
Pages
174–182
Identifiers
PMID: 10890589
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Operant-conditioning techniques were used to investigate the ability of zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) and Bengalese finches (Lonchura striata domestica) to detect a zebra finch or a Bengalese finch target song intermixed with other birdsongs. Sixteen birds were trained to respond to the presence of a particular target song, either of their own species (n = 8) or of another species (n = 8). The birds were able to learn a discrimination between song mixtures that contained a target song and song mixtures that did not, and they were able to maintain their response to the target song when it was mixed with novel songs. Zebra finches, but not Bengalese finches, learned the discrimination with a conspecific target more quickly and were worse at detecting a Bengalese finch in the presence of a conspecific song. The results indicate that selective attention to birdsongs within an auditory scene is related to their biological relevance.

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