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A non-vocal alarm? Effects of wing trill playbacks on antipredator responses in the scaled dove

Abstract

Animals have evolved a variety of mechanisms to detect and avoid predation. The non-vocal sounds produced by some bird species during takeoff flights have been considered to function as an alarm call, because they may convey information about predation risk. Here, we experimentally investigated the effects of the non-vocal sound (wing trills) produced by the scaled dove (Columbina squammata) on antipredation behaviours of conspecifics. We evaluated the individual response to playbacks of the wing trill stimulus and compared it to the response to other two control stimuli (vocalizations of the scaled dove and the southern house wren). We found that doves’ probability to become vigilant or to display freezing behaviour was higher after a wing trills stimulus in comparison to the other playback stimuli. These results suggest that wing trill production in scaled doves communicate potential risks and are considered by the individuals in the decision-making process, but we cannot rule out the possibility that any takeoff flight sound might also promote antipredator responses.

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Data available on request from the authors.

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Acknowledgements

We thank the Centro Universitário de Brasília (CEUB) and the Institutional Scientific Initiation Scholarship Program (PIC) for the logistic support for this study.

Funding

This work was supported by the Centro Universitário de Brasília (UniCEUB) and the Institutional Scientific Initiation Scholarship Program (PIC).

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Correspondence to Raphael Igor Dias.

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All applicable international, national and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed. All procedures performed in studies involving animals were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institution or practice at which the studies were conducted. The study complied with the current laws of Brazil under permit 50793 from Instituto Brasileiro de Recursos Renováveis (IBAMA).

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The authors declare no competing interests.

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Amorim, P.S., Dias, R.I. A non-vocal alarm? Effects of wing trill playbacks on antipredator responses in the scaled dove. acta ethol 24, 119–126 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10211-021-00368-9

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10211-021-00368-9

Keywords

  • Acoustic communication
  • Antipredator response
  • Intraspecific communication
  • Collective detection
  • Mechanical sound
  • Non-vocal