Event Title

Do Eastern Gray Squirrels Eavesdrop on Black-Capped Chickadee Referential Alarm Calls?

Presenter Information

Pearl Rivers, Oberlin College

Location

Science Center, A154

Document Type

Presentation

Start Date

4-25-2014 4:00 PM

End Date

4-25-2014 5:15 PM

Abstract

Alarm calls are vocalizations produced by animals in response to a perceived threat and may provide information about the presence of predators to others in the area, including conspecifics and heterospecifics with similar predators. Black-capped chickadees produce alarm calls that convey information about predator size and threat level. For this project, I tested the hypothesis that eastern gray squirrels are more likely to increase alertness in response to chickadee calls indicating larger predators than to calls indicating smaller predators. The results will indicate if squirrels attend to the most squirrel-relevant information, rather than to the urgency of the information for the calling chickadees.

Notes

Session III, Panel 12 - Risk, Regulation, and Response: Biological Studies of Muscle Contraction, Carcinogens, and Black-Capped Chickadees
Moderator: Marta Laskowski, Professor of Biology

Major

Biology

Advisor(s)

Roger Laushman, Biology

Project Mentor(s)

Keith Tarvin, Biology

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Apr 25th, 4:00 PM Apr 25th, 5:15 PM

Do Eastern Gray Squirrels Eavesdrop on Black-Capped Chickadee Referential Alarm Calls?

Science Center, A154

Alarm calls are vocalizations produced by animals in response to a perceived threat and may provide information about the presence of predators to others in the area, including conspecifics and heterospecifics with similar predators. Black-capped chickadees produce alarm calls that convey information about predator size and threat level. For this project, I tested the hypothesis that eastern gray squirrels are more likely to increase alertness in response to chickadee calls indicating larger predators than to calls indicating smaller predators. The results will indicate if squirrels attend to the most squirrel-relevant information, rather than to the urgency of the information for the calling chickadees.