Rumble vocalizations mediate interpartner distance in African elephants, Loxodonta africana

The ability to utilize contact calls to facilitate reunions with social partners has been documented in a number of species showing a fission/fusion social organization. Field observations and playback experiments suggest that African elephants use low-frequency rumble vocalizations to reunite with their herd members following periods of fission. Using a digital audio and GPS recording […]

Social context influences the vocalizations of a home-raised African Grey parrot (Psittacus erithacus erithacus)

Home-raised African Grey parrots (Psittacus erithacus erithacus) exhibit strong social bonding with their human companions. We examined how 1 parrot’s vocal production (speech and nonword sounds) changed with social context with respect to descriptive measures of the vocalizations and their thematic content. We videotaped the parrot in 4 social conditions: subject home alone, subject and […]

Individual recognition in a wild cooperative mammal using contact calls

Many of the mechanisms advanced to explain the evolution of intraspecific cooperative behaviour, such as reciprocity or social prestige, hinge on an animal’s ability to recognize individual group members. However, ‘true’ individual recognition, between adult group members, has never been demonstrated in a cooperatively breeding bird or mammal species. We tested whether a wild cooperative […]