For imitative parrots, wagging tongues may be key to vocalization

In a recent finding that throws new light on mechanisms of animal vocal communication, researchers have shown that parrots can modify the sound of their vocalizations by articulating their tongue. Tongue placement is known to be a fundamental mechanism in human speech, but evidence that similar mechanisms can shape vocalizations in other species has been difficult to obtain.

In humans, speech is produced by a two-component system, consisting of a sound source, e.g., the vibrating vocal folds, and a so-called vocal-tract filter, which is formed by the acoustic resonances of oral and nasal cavities. Characteristics of the latter can be changed by articulatory gesturesthe most important of which are tongue movementsresulting in different speech sounds. Although birds and humans share the capability to make very complex vocalizations, it was generally believed that most of birds vocal complexity originated from the vocal sound source, the syrinx. The role of vocal-tract articulators, so important in humans, was believed to be only subsidiary in birds, although it has been proposed that parrots, with their fleshy, highly movable tongue, might form an exception.

In the new study, researchers Gabril Beckers, Brian Nelson, and Roderick Suthers from Indiana University show that tongue movements in Monk parakeets, Myiopsitta monachus, cause changes in their vocal-tract formant frequencies and amplitudes; formants are narrow ranges of sound frequency that form the basis for vowel sounds and are the same types of sound characteristics that are important in human speech. These observations suggest that lingual articulation is involved in the well-known ability of parrots to mimic human speech. Even more intriguingly, lingual articulation may also underlie a speech-like formant system in the natural vocalizations of parrots.


Contact: Heidi Hardman
Cell Press

Page: 1

Related biology news :

1. Methane and mini-horses: Fossils reveal effects of global warming
2. Discovery Of New Fossils In Gobi Desert Of Mongolia Provides Important Insight Into Early Mammal Evolution
3. Molecular "Fossils" Of Early Life
4. American Museum Of Natural History Researchers Announce Discovery Of Oldest Known Fossil Ants - 92-Million-Year-Old Fossils Found In New Jersey Amber
5. Fossils Show British Columbia Was Once 2,000 Miles South
6. Where Fossils Fear To Tread: Scientists Follow Genes To An Ancient Ancestor
7. DNA lends scientists a hand, revealing new chemical reactions
8. Award winning researchers reveal potential new role for Glivec
9. Hidden diversity: DNA barcoding reveals a common butterfly is actually 10 different species
10. Anthrax enzyme images reveal secrets of antibiotic resistance, suggest new drug design
11. Brown research reveals key insight into memory-making

Post Your Comments:

(Date:10/17/2019)... Texas (PRWEB) , ... October 15, 2019 , ... ... firm, is pleased to announce it made its first appearance on the Houston ... revenue growth of 56 percent. , With corporate headquarters in Houston, Modality ...
(Date:10/17/2019)... CHICAGO (PRWEB) , ... October 16, 2019 , ... ... to announce that its global expansion into Europe continues with the opening of ... a presence in Romania was driven by the country’s accelerated growth in clinical ...
(Date:10/10/2019)... SAN DIEGO (PRWEB) , ... October 09, 2019 ... ... their merger-acquisition of Nanosens Innovations, Inc., the creators of CRISPR-Chip™. Cardea first ... announcement of their Early Access Program for the Genome Sensor™. Built with CRISPR-Chip ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:9/17/2019)... ... September 16, 2019 , ... ... the China Focus @ Biotech Week Boston, a forum organized by MyBioGate, Inc. ... healthcare innovation. , After a careful process of evaluation, twelve companies out of ...
(Date:9/11/2019)... Pa. (PRWEB) , ... September 09, 2019 , ... ... Response Technology (IRT) for clinical trial randomization and drug supply chain management, today ... provider for the global life sciences industry. , “The integration between Veeva Vault ...
(Date:9/11/2019)... , ... September 10, 2019 , ... ... manufacturing solutions for drugs, biologics, gene therapies, and consumer health products, today announced ... be held at the Bausparkasse Schwäbisch Hall AG, Schwabisch Hall, Germany, on Sept. ...
(Date:9/8/2019)... NEW YORK (PRWEB) , ... September 04, 2019 ... ... New York Academy of Sciences announced today the three Winners and ... Supporting outstanding postdoctoral scientists from academic research institutions across New York, New Jersey, ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: