Journal of comparative physiology

, Volume 136, Issue 3, pp 227–233

Behavioral audiogram and masked thresholds of the megachiropteran echolocating bat,Rousettus

  • Roderick A. Suthers
  • Carol A. Summers

DOI: 10.1007/BF00657537

Cite this article as:
Suthers, R.A. & Summers, C.A. J. Comp. Physiol. (1980) 136: 227. doi:10.1007/BF00657537


  1. 1.

    A behavioral auditory threshold obtained by operant conditioning of the megachiropteran bat,Rousettus aegyptiacus, is described.

  2. 2.

    The auditory threshold in quiet has a maximum sensitivity between 8 and 10 kHz, separated by an 8 to 10 dB rise from a second more sharply tuned peak at 20 kHz (Fig. 2). The minimum mean threshold is 44 dB SPL at 10 kHz. No response was obtained to sounds below 1 kHz or above 30 kHz.

  3. 3.

    The amount of masking produced by the presence of broad band noise with a spectrum level of 31.7 dB SPL varies between a minimum at 2 kHz of 10.1 dB and a maximum at 20 kHz of 21.9 dB (Fig. 2).

  4. 4.

    The critical ratio is smallest (29 dB) at 8 kHz. It increases gradually at higher frequencies in a manner similar to other mammals studied, but is unusual in rising very steeply at lower frequencies (Fig. 3).

  5. 5.

    The masked threshold at 12 kHz increases only about 11 dB when the stimulus duration is decreased from 250 ms to 2 ms (Fig. 4).

  6. 6.

    The acoustic orientation ofRousettus is discussed in relation to these psychophysical data.




sound pressure level (re. 2·10−5 N/m2)

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roderick A. Suthers
    • 1
  • Carol A. Summers
    • 2
  1. 1.Physiology Section, Medical Sciences ProgramIndiana University, School of MedicineBloomingtonUSA
  2. 2.Department of BiologyIndiana UniversityBloomingtonUSA