Vocal syntax development in the white-crowned sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys)

Citation
Ja. Soha et P. Marler, Vocal syntax development in the white-crowned sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys), J COM PSYCH, 115(2), 2001, pp. 172-180
Citations number
18
Language
INGLESE
art.tipo
Article
Categorie Soggetti
Neurosciences & Behavoir
Journal title
JOURNAL OF COMPARATIVE PSYCHOLOGY
ISSN journal
0735-7036 → ACNP
Volume
115
Issue
2
Year of publication
2001
Pages
172 - 180
Database
ISI
SICI code
0735-7036(200106)115:2<172:VSDITW>2.0.ZU;2-X
Abstract
Birdsong development exemplifies the interplay between experience and predi sposition that occurs during behavioral ontogeny. Songbirds must hear song models to develop normal song, yet they preferentially learn conspecific so ng when given a choice in the laboratory. To the extent that features guidi ng this selective learning are pre-encoded in the brain, such features shou ld also develop in the song of young birds not exposed to them in tutor mod els. To investigate whether song syntax-phrase number and order-is such a f eature in the white-crowned sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys), the authors t utored males of this species with separate phrase models. Birds learned and assembled these into songs of species-typical sequence, suggesting that sy ntax is to some degree pre-encoded in white-crowned sparrows. Birds also le arned heterospecific phrases, confirming previous evidence that note phonol ogy is not the primary cue for selective song learning in this species.