Advertisement

Journal of comparative physiology

, Volume 128, Issue 3, pp 235–240 | Cite as

Active phase coupling in electric fish: Behavioral control with microsecond precision

  • G. Langner
  • H. Scheich
Article

Summary

Pairs of very high frequency electric fish from South America (Sternarchorhynchus sp. andSternarchorhamphus sp.) synchronize their discharge and finally engage in phase coupling which is maintained over minutes (Fig. 2). This manoeuvre, called Active Phase Coupling (APC), may be as precise as a few microseconds phase jitter over half a min (Fig. 5). Phase coupling is also accomplished to other fish and to stimuli the frequency of which is several hundred Hz away (Fig. 3). In this case the EOD of the responding fish and the stimulus finally are higher harmonics of a common fundamental and phase coupling is to every nth wave of the stimulus. The APC is more complex a behavior than the known Jamming Avoidance Response. Its social significance is yet to be determined. It involves a neuronal control loop with at least 4 synapses some of which are probably electrotonic.

Keywords

Active Phase Control Loop Behavioral Control Avoidance Response High Harmonic 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Bennett, M.V.L., Pappas, G.D., Gimenez, M., Makajima, Y.: Physiology and ultrastructure of electrotonic junctions. Medullary electromotor nuclei in Gymnotid fish. J. Neurophysiol.30, 236–300 (1967)Google Scholar
  2. Bullock, T.H.: Species differences in effect of electroreceptor input on electric organ pacemakers and other aspects of behavior in electric fish. Brain Behav. Evol.2, 85–118 (1969)Google Scholar
  3. Bullock, T.H., Hamstra, R.H., Jr., Scheich, H.: The jamming avoidance response of high frequency electric fish. I and II. J. comp. Physiol.77, 1–48 (1972)Google Scholar
  4. Erskine, F.T., Howe, D.W., Weed, B.C.: The discharge period of the weakly electric fishSternarchus albifrons. Am. Zool.6, (4), 521 (1966)Google Scholar
  5. Gottschalk, B., Scheich, H.: Phase sensitivity and phase coupling: Common mechanisms for communication behaviors in gymnotid wave- and pulse species. Behav. Ecol. Sociobiol. (in press)Google Scholar
  6. Hall, J.L.: Binaural interaction in the accessory superior-olivary nucleus of the cat. J. Acoust. Soc. Am.37, 814–823 (1965)Google Scholar
  7. Heiligenberg, W.: Electrolocation of objects in the electric fish,Eigenmannia (Rhamphichthyidae, Gymnotoidei). J. comp. Physiol.87, 137–164 (1973)Google Scholar
  8. Heiligenberg, W.: Principles of electrolocation and jamming avoidance in electric fish. Studies of brain function, Vol. 1. Berlin, Heidelberg, New York: Springer 1977Google Scholar
  9. Hoist, E. v.: Die relative Koordination als Phänomen und als Methode zentralnervöser Funktionsanalyse. Erg. Physiol.42, 228–306 (1939)Google Scholar
  10. Hopkins, C.D.: Sex differences in electric signaling in an electric fish. Science176, 1035–1037 (1972)Google Scholar
  11. Kramer, B.: Electric organ discharge interaction during interspecific agonistic behavior in freely swimming mormyrid fish. A method to evaluate two or more. J. comp. Physiol.93, 203–236 (1974)Google Scholar
  12. Maler, L., Finger, T., Karten, H.J.: Differential projections of ordinary lateral line receptors and electroreceptors in the gymnotid fish.Apteronotus (Sternarchus) albifrons. J. comp. Neurol.158, 363–382 (1974)Google Scholar
  13. Matsubara, J., Heiligenberg, W.: How well do electric fish electrolocate under jamming conditions. J. comp. Physiol.125, 285–290 (1978)Google Scholar
  14. Roederer, J.G.: Introduction to the physics and psychophysics of music. German Edition: Physikalische und psychoakustische Grundlagen der Musik. Berlin, Heidelberg, New York: Springer 1977Google Scholar
  15. Rose, J.E., Gross, N.B., Geissler, C.D., Hind, J.E.: Some neural mechanisms in the inferior colliculus of the cat which may be relevant to localization of a sound source. J. Neurophysiol.29, 288–314 (1966)Google Scholar
  16. Russell, C.J., Myers, J.P., Bell, C.C.: The echo response inGnathonemus petersii (Mormyridae). J. comp. Physiol.92, 181–200 (1974)Google Scholar
  17. Scheich, H.: Neuronal analysis of wave form in the time domain: Midbrain units in electric fish during social behavior. Science185, 365–367 (1974)Google Scholar
  18. Scheich, H.: Neural basis of communication in the high frequency electric fish,Eigenmannia virescens (Jamming avoidance response) I, II, III. J. comp. Physiol.113, 181–255 (1977)Google Scholar
  19. Scheich, H., Bullock, T.H.: The role of electroreceptors in the animals life. II. The detection of electric fields from electric organs. In: Handbook of sensory physiology. Fessard, A. (ed.), Vol. HI/3. Berlin, Heidelberg, New York: Springer 1974Google Scholar
  20. Scheich, H., Gottschalk, B., Nickel, B.: The jamming avoidance response inRhamphichthys rostratus: An alternative principle of time domain analysis in electric fish. Exp. Brain Res.28, 229–233 (1977)Google Scholar
  21. Szabo, T.: Activity of peripheral and central neurons involved in electroreception. In: Lateral line detectors. Cahn, P. (ed.), pp. 295–311. Bloomington: Indiana University Press 1967Google Scholar
  22. Szabo, T., Sakata, H., Ravaille, M.: An electrotonically coupled pathway in the central nervous system of some teleost fish, Gymnotidae and Mormyridae. Brain Res.95, 459–474 (1975)Google Scholar
  23. Watanabe, A., Takeda, K.: The change of discharge frequency by A.C. stimulus in a weak electric fish. J. Exp. Biol.40, 57–66 (1963)Google Scholar
  24. Wendler, G., Heiligenberg, W.: Relative Koordination bei gekoppelten, rhythmisch tätigen Modellneuronen. Zool. Anz. Suppl.33; Verh. Zool. Ges.1969, 477–482 (1969)Google Scholar
  25. Westby, M.: Has the latency dependent response ofGymnotus carapo to discharge-triggered stimuli a bearing on electric fish communication? J. comp. Physiol.96, 307–341 (1975)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. Langner
    • 1
    • 2
  • H. Scheich
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Institut für Zoologie der Technischen Hochschule DarmstadtDarmstadtFederal Republic of Germany
  2. 2.INPAManausBrazil

Personalised recommendations