Recognition of familiarity on the basis of howls: a playback experiment in a captive group of wolves

in Behaviour
Restricted Access
Get Access to Full Text
Rent on DeepDyve

Have an Access Token?



Enter your access token to activate and access content online.

Please login and go to your personal user account to enter your access token.



Help

Have Institutional Access?



Access content through your institution. Any other coaching guidance?



Connect

Playback experiments were conducted with a pack of captive Iberian wolves. We used a habituation–discrimination paradigm to test wolves’ ability to discriminate howls based on: (1) artificial manipulation of acoustic parameters of howls and (2) the identity of howling individuals. Manipulations in fundamental frequency and frequency modulation within the natural range of intra-individual howl variation did not elicit dishabituation, while manipulation of modulation pattern did produce dishabituation. With respect to identity, across trials wolves habituated to unfamiliar howls by a familiar wolf (i.e., no direct contact, but previous exposure to howls by this wolf), but not to unfamiliar howls from unfamiliar wolves (i.e., no direct contact and no previous exposure to howls by these wolves). Modulation pattern seems to be an important bioacoustic feature for individual recognition. Overall, our results provide the first experimental evidence that wolves can discriminate individuals based on the acoustic structure of their howls.

Recognition of familiarity on the basis of howls: a playback experiment in a captive group of wolves

in Behaviour

Sections

References

BeeM.A.GerhardtH.C.C. (2001). Neighbour-stranger discrimination by territorial male bullfrogs (Rana catesbeiana): II. Perceptual basis. — Anim. Behav. 62: 1129-1140.

BlumsteinD.T.DanielJ.C. (2004). Yellow-bellied marmots discriminate between the alarm calls of individuals and are more responsive to calls from juveniles. — Anim. Behav. 68: 1257-1265.

BoitaniL. (2000). Action plan for the conservation of the wolves (Canis lupus) in Europe Nature and environment No. 113. — Council of Europe Strasbourg.

BradburyJ.W.VehrencampS.L. (2010). Principles of animal communication2nd edn.Sinnauer AssociatesSutherland, MA.

CharltonB.D.HuangY.SwaisgoodR.R. (2009). Vocal discrimination of potential mates by female giant pandas (Ailuropoda melanoleuca). — Biol. Lett. 5: 597-599.

CharrierI.MathevonN.JouventinP. (2003). Vocal signature recognition of mothers by fur seal pups. — Anim. Behav. 65: 543-550.

DemmaD.J.MechL.D. (2009). Wolf use of summer territory in Northeastern Minnesota. — J. Wildl. Managem. 73: 380-384.

FallsJ.B. (1982). Individual recognition by sounds in birds. — In: Acoustic communication in birdsVol. 2 ( KroodsmaD.H.MillerE.H. eds). Academic PressNew York, NY p.  237-278.

FitchW.T.KelleyP. (2000). Perception of vocal tract resonances by whooping cranes Grus americana. — Ethology 106: 559-574.

FriedmanS. (1972). Habituation and recovery of visual response in the alert human newborn. — J. Exp. Child Psychol. 13: 339-349.

FrommoltK.-H.H.GoltsmanM.E.MacdonaldD.W. (2003). Barking foxes, Alopex lagopus: field experiments in individual recognition in a territorial mammal. — Anim. Behav. 65: 509-518.

GazzolaA.AvanzinelliE.MauriL.ScanduraM.ApollonioM. (2002). Temporal changes of howling in south European wolf packs. — Ital. J. Zool. 69: 157-161.

GoodmannP.A.KlinghammerE.WillardJ. (2002). Wolf ethogram (Revised 2002). — Eckhard H. Hess Institute of EthologyBattle Ground, IN.

HarringtonF.H. (1986). Timber wolf howling playback studies: discrimination of pup from adult howls. — Anim. Behav. 34: 1575-1577.

HarringtonF.H. (1987). Agressive howling in wolves. — Anim. Behav. 35: 1575-1577.

HarringtonF.H.AsaC.S. (2003). Wolf communication. — In: Wolves: behavior ecology and conservation ( MechL.D.BoitaniL. eds). University of Chicago PressChicago, IL p.  66-103.

HarringtonF.H.MechL.D. (1978). Wolf vocalization. — In: Wolf and man: evolution in parallel ( HallR.L.SharpH.S. eds). Academic PressNew York, NY p.  109-132.

HarringtonF.H.MechL.D. (1979). Wolf howling and its role in territory maintenance. — Behaviour 68: 207-249.

KazialK.A.KennyT.L.BurnettS.C. (2008). Little brown bats (Myotis lucifugus) recognize individual identity of conspecifics using sonar calls. — Ethology 114: 469-478.

KnörnschildM.FeifelM.KalkoE.K.V. (2013). Mother-offspring recognition in the bat Carollia perspicillata. — Anim. Behav. 86: 941-948.

KroodsmaD.E.ByersB.E.GoodaleE.JohnsonS.LiuW.-C.C. (2001). Pseudoreplication in playback experiments, revisited a decade later. — Anim. Behav. 61: 1029-1033.

LaDageL.FerkinM. (2006). Male leopard geckos (Eublepharis macularius) can discriminate between two familiar females. — Behaviour 143: 1033-1049.

LehnerP.N. (1996). Handbook of ethological methods. — Cambridge University PressCambridge.

McCombK.MossC.SayialelS.BakerL. (2000). Unusually extensive networks of vocal recognition in African elephants. — Anim. Behav. 59: 1103-1109.

McGregorP.K. (2000). Playback experiments: design and analysis. — Acta Ethol. 3: 3-8.

MechL.D. (1970). The wolf: the ecology and behavior of an endangered species. — The Natural History PressGarden City, NY.

MechL.D.BoitaniL. (2003). Wolf social ecology. — In: Wolves: behavior ecology and conservation ( MechL.D.BoitaniL. eds). University of Chicago PressChicago, IL p.  1-34.

MollesL.E.VehrencampS.L. (2001). Neighbour recognition by resident males in the banded wren, Thryothorus pleurostictus, a tropical songbird with high song type sharing. — Anim. Behav. 61: 119-127.

MolnárC.PongráczP.FaragóT.DókaA.MiklosiA. (2009). Dogs discriminate between barks: the effect of context and identity of the caller. — Behav. Proc. 82: 198-201.

PackardJ.M. (2003). Wolf behavior: reproductive, social, and intelligent. — In: Wolves: behavior ecology and conservation ( MechL.D.BoitaniL. eds). University of Chicago PressChicago, IL p.  35-65.

PalaciosV.MechL.D. (2011). Problems with studying wolf predation on small prey in summer via global positioning system collars. — Eur. J. Wildlife Res. 57: 149-156.

PalaciosV.FontE.MárquezR. (2007). Iberian wolf howls: acoustic structure, individual variation, and a comparison with North American populations. — J. Mammal. 88: 606-613.

R Development Core Team (2010). R: a language and environment for statistical computing. — R Development Core TeamVienna.

RaemaekersJ.J.RaemaekersP.M. (1985). Field playback of loud calls to gibbons (Hylobates lar): territorial, sex-specific and species-specific responses. — Anim. Behav. 33: 481-493.

RebyD.HewisonM.IzquierdoM.PepinD. (2001). Red deer (Cervus elaphus) hinds discriminate between the roars of their current harem-holder stag and those of neighbouring stags. — Ethology 107: 951-959.

RendallD.RodmanP.S.EmondR.E. (1996). Vocal recognition of individuals and kin in free-ranging rhesus monkeys. — Anim. Behav. 51: 1007-1015.

SearbyA.JouventinP. (2003). Mother-lamb acoustic recognition in sheep: a frequency coding. — Proc. Roy. Soc. Lond. B: Biol. Sci. 270: 1765-1771.

SearbyA.JouventinP.AubinT. (2004). Acoustic recognition in macaroni penguins: an original signature system. — Anim. Behav. 67: 615-625.

SearcyW.A. (1989). Pseudoreplication, external validity and the design of playback experiments. — Anim. Behav. 38: 715-717.

ShalterM.D.FentressJ.C.YoungG.W. (1977). Determinants of response of wolf pups to auditory signals. — Behaviour 60: 98-114.

SharpeL.L.HillA.CherryM.I. (2013). Individual recognition in a wild cooperative mammal using contact calls. — Anim. Behav. 86: 893-900.

ShettleworthS.J. (2010). Cognition evolution and behavior2nd edn.Oxford University PressNew York, NY.

SlabbekoornH.ten CateC. (1998). Perceptual tuning to frequency characteristics of territorial signals in collared doves. — Anim. Behav. 56: 847-857.

Sousa-LimaR.S.PagliaA.P.Da FonsecaG.A.B. (2002). Signature information and individual recognition in the isolation calls of Amazonian manatees, Trichechus inunguis (Mammalia: Sirenia). — Anim. Behav. 63: 301-310.

ThomM.D.HurstJ.L. (2004). Individual recognition by scent. — Ann. Zool. Fenn. 41: 765-787.

TibbettsE.A.DaleJ. (2007). Individual recognition: it is good to be different. — Trends Ecol. Evol. 22: 529-537.

TibbettsE.A.SheehanM.J.DaleJ. (2008). A testable definition of individual recognition. — Trends Ecol. Evol. 23: 356.

ToozeZ.J.HarringtonF.H.FentressJ.C. (1990). Individually distinct vocalizations in timber wolves, Canis lupus. — Anim. Behav. 40: 723-730.

WeissD.J.HauserM.D. (2002). Perception of harmonics in the combination long call of cottontop tamarins, Saguinus oedipus. — Anim. Behav. 64: 415-426.

WilsonD.R.MennillD.J. (2010). Black-capped chickadees, Poecile atricapillus, can use individually distinctive songs to discriminate among conspecifics. — Anim. Behav. 79: 1267-1275.

Figures

  • View in gallery

    Acoustic stimuli created (upper panel) and playback protocol conducted (lower panel). From our sample of recorded howls (emitted by six wolves unrelated to Senda Viva’s wolves) we randomly selected a wolf (Familiar Wolf) to create the habituation stimulus (Familiar Stimulus) to habituate the group of captive wolves to its howls. This figure is published in colour in the online edition of this journal, which can be accessed via http://booksandjournals.brillonline.com/content/journals/1568539x.

  • View in gallery

    Familiar stimulus and playback stimuli created modifying the acoustic structure of howls. FS, Familiar Stimulus; FS+100, +200, −100 and −200, familiar stimulus increasing and decreasing the fundamental frequency by 100 or 200 Hz; FS+cofm, FS increasing the coefficient of frequency modulation; FS rev, FS reversing the howls.

  • View in gallery

    Wolf enclosure sketch. Z1 and Z2, zones where the wolves were visible from the observation point; Z3, area where wolves could not be observed; OP, observation point; S, speaker.

  • View in gallery

    Level of response (number of Attention displayed by all the wolves within sight) during the two min following the beginning of the stimulus. (Left) Level of response obtained to the Familiar Stimulus (FS) in the valid trials (N=10) during the habituation phase. (Right) Average level of response (mean ± SE number of Attention) for each stimulus taking into account all the valid trials. FS (d), FS during the habituation–dishabituation phase; FS+100, +200, −100, −200: FS adding or subtracting 100 or 200 Hz; FS+cofm, FS manipulating only the coefficient of frequency modulation; FS Rev, FS with the howls reversed; UFhFw, unfamiliar howls by the familiar wolf; UFhUFw, unfamiliar howls by unfamiliar wolves.

  • View in gallery

    Level of response (i.e., number of Attention; see Methods) of wolves to unfamiliar howls emitted by a familiar wolf or by unfamiliar wolves. Solid lines reflect predicted values for each treatment, while dashed lines show the standard error interval (GLM model: number of attention − treatment ∗ playback trial + group size; Poisson error distribution). Note that random jitter has been introduced in the x axis to distinguish data points from both treatments. This figure is published in colour in the online edition of this journal, which can be accessed via http://booksandjournals.brillonline.com/content/journals/1568539x.

Index Card

Content Metrics

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 14 14 10
Full Text Views 5 5 5
PDF Downloads 1 1 1
EPUB Downloads 0 0 0