Vocal production by terrestrial mammals: source, filter and function

Taylor, Anna M, Charlton, Benjamin D and Reby, David (2015) Vocal production by terrestrial mammals: source, filter and function. In: Suthers, R, Fitch, W T, Popper, A and Fay, D (eds.) Vertebrate Sound Production and Acoustic Communication. Springer Handbook of Auditory Research . Springer, pp. 229-260. ISBN 9783319277219

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Abstract

In little over two decades, researchers have moved from a situation in which most studies of terrestrial mammal vocal signals focused on conspicuous characteristics, such as their rate of occurrence, and where the spectral
acoustic variation was largely ignored or poorly quantified, to a field of study in which there is a much better understanding of the nature and function of
the acoustic parameters that compose vocalizations. The source-filter theory, originally developed for the analysis of speech signals, has played a large role
in this progress. Understanding how the acoustic variability of vocalizations is grounded within their mechanism of production has enabled researchers to
predict the type of information that vocal signals are likely to contain, and to predict their co-variation with morphological and/or physiological attributes of
callers. Moreover, the powerful theoretical platform derived from the source-filter theory not just conceptually supports the formulation of multilevel
hypotheses, but also paves the way to develop the corresponding methodologies needed to address them. Although the full range of acoustic diversity of
terrestrial mammal signals has yet to be explored, this chapter draws together a wealth of research conducted over the last two decades, and describes how source- and filter-related acoustic components encode functionally relevant information in the vocal communication systems of terrestrial mammal and how selection pressures have led to the evolution of anatomical innovations
that enable animals to produce exaggerated vocal traits.

Item Type: Book Section
Keywords: Acoustic signals - Formants - Larynx - Nonlinear phenomena pitch - Sexual communication - Source-filter theory - Vocal apparatus - Vocal communication
Schools and Departments: School of Psychology > Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion
Depositing User: Lene Hyltoft
Date Deposited: 04 Aug 2015 12:28
Last Modified: 24 May 2016 12:00
URI: http://srodev.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/55872

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