An Introduction to Rodent Bioacoustics
Rodents are a relatively diverse order of mammals that are found in abundance virtually all over the globe. The behavior of wild rodents is less well understood than that of laboratory rodents. Aboveground juvenile and adult rodents produce vocalizations that are used for communicating information about predators, mating readiness, hunger, and food availability. Subterranean rodents not only produce vocalizations but also drum their feet and bang their heads against burrows to communicate. The auditory system of rodents allows for detecting signals in quiet, discriminating between characteristics of communication signals, categorizing signals, and localizing sounds in space. Genetically manipulating laboratory rodents has elucidated much of what is known about auditory perception in mammals. Finally, the context and state of the rodent can have an influence on both the signal produced and the signal received. A common theme of the chapters in this volume is that a lot is known about bioacoustics in just a few species of rodents, while absolutely nothing is known about communication by most rodent species, presenting an opportunity for laboratory and field bioacousticians alike.
KeywordsAcoustic communication Animal communication Chinchilla Context Discrimination Hamster Hearing Mongolian gerbil Mouse Rat Rodent anatomy Sound localization Subterranean communication Ultrasonic vocalizations
Compliance with Ethics Requirements
: Micheal Dent declares that she has no conflict of interest.
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