Journal of Comparative Physiology A

, Volume 167, Issue 1, pp 89–99

Peripheral auditory processing in the bobtail lizard Tiliqua rugosa

I. Frequency tuning of auditory-nerve fibres
  • Geoffrey A. Manley
  • Christine Köppl
  • Brian M. Johnstone


  1. 1.

    Primary auditory-nerve fibres of the bobtail lizard have asymmetrical, V-shaped frequency-threshold tuning curves. Fibre characteristic frequencies (CF) ranged from 0.2 to 4.5 kHz. The most sensitive fibres had a CF near 1.2 kHz and a threshold of 6 dB SPL.

  2. 2.

    Fibres with CFs below 0.85 kHz had simple U-shaped tuning curves; higher-CF fibres had tuning curves with obvious sharp tips around CF. These tips were up to 46 dB in depth. Several other parameters of the tuning curves, like the selectivity coefficients Q10 dB and Q40 dB and the course of the tuning curve flanks, also permit a separation into the same low-CF and high-CF groups.

  3. 3.

    The tuning sharpness and the thresholds of both low- and high-CF fibres were hypoxia-sensitive, the loss of sensitivity being greatest at CF.

  4. 4.

    Only the low-CF group of fibres showed two-tone rate suppression. In those fibres, two-tone rate suppression was only found with suppressor frequencies above CF, but not below CF.


Key words

Lizard Hearing Auditory nerve Frequency tuning 



characteristic frequency


two-tone rate suppression


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Geoffrey A. Manley
    • 1
  • Christine Köppl
    • 1
  • Brian M. Johnstone
    • 2
  1. 1.Institut für Zoologie, Technische Universität MünchenGarchingFRG
  2. 2.Department of PhysiologyUniversity of W. AustraliaNedlandsAustralia

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