Vocal individuality of in-air Weddell seal (Leptonychotes weddellii) pup "primary" calls

Collins, Kim T., Terhune, John M., Rogers, Tracey L., Wheatley, Kathryn E. and Harcourt, Robert G. 2006, Vocal individuality of in-air Weddell seal (Leptonychotes weddellii) pup "primary" calls, Marine mammal science, vol. 22, no. 4, pp. 933-951, doi: 10.1111/j.1748-7692.2006.00074.x.

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Title Vocal individuality of in-air Weddell seal (Leptonychotes weddellii) pup "primary" calls
Author(s) Collins, Kim T.
Terhune, John M.
Rogers, Tracey L.
Wheatley, Kathryn E.
Harcourt, Robert G.
Journal name Marine mammal science
Volume number 22
Issue number 4
Start page 933
End page 951
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell
Place of publication Malden, MA
Publication date 2006-07
ISSN 0824-0469
Keyword(s) vocal individuality
Leptonychotes weddellii
Weddell seal
pup calls
Summary As a result of selective pressures faced during lactation, vocal recognition may play a crucial role in maintaining the phocid mother–pup bond during the period of dependence. To investigate this possibility, we examined whether Weddell seal (Leptonychotes weddellii) pups produce individually distinctive “primary” calls. One temporal, nine fundamental frequency features, and two spectral characteristics were measured. A discriminant function analysis (DFA) of 15 Vestfold Hills pups correctly classified 52% of calls, while the cross-validation procedure classified 29% of calls to the correct pup. A second DFA of 10 known-age McMurdo Sound pups correctly classified 44% of “test” calls. For novel calls, the probabilities of attaining such classification rates by chance are low. The relationship between age and call stereotypy indicated that pups 2 wk and older may be more vocally distinctive. Overall, findings suggest that Weddell seal pup “primary” calls are moderately distinctive and only exhibit sufficient stereotypy to aid maternal recognition by approximately two weeks of age.
Language eng
DOI 10.1111/j.1748-7692.2006.00074.x
Field of Research 060801 Animal Behaviour
060201 Behavioural Ecology
Socio Economic Objective 960801 Antarctic and Sub-Antarctic Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2006 by the Society for Marine Mammalogy
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30039826

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