Significance of Antiphonal Song in the Eastern Whipbird, Psophodes Olivaceus
Author: Watson, Michael
Source: Behaviour, Volume 35, Numbers 1-2, 1969 , pp. 157-178(22)
Abstract:A spectrographic analysis of the antiphonal song of the Eastern Whipbird, Psophodes olivaceus was carried out. Preliminary results show an overall constancy of male song and a marked geographical variation in female song. Male song is shown to consist of two components: the introduction, which is individually variable; and the whip-crack, which is rigidly species specific. Individual male birds use a series of up to four distinct frequency bands in their introduction. The female antiphonal component shows an individual variation but a constant pattern in any one area. There is a slow development of antiphonal song in juvenile pairs. Both sexes have specialised non-directional nest approach calls. Tentative conclusions indicate a threefold function of antiphony in this species: maintainance of contact; maintainance of the pair bond; and territorial advertisement and display. The song of P. olivaceus is discussed in relation to P. nigrogularis and other Passerine antiphonal species. There is a discussion of the possible origin, evolution and adaptive significance of antiphony in P. olivaceus.
Document Type: Research article
Publication date: 1969-01-01