Katie - Tufted Titmouse Anti-predator Communication Network...

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3/23/2011 1 Tufted Titmouse Anti-predator Communication Network Dr. Katie Sieving, www.wec.ufl.edu/faculty/sievingk ; [email protected] Anti-predator Communication • Most vertebrates have alarm signals – Visual – Vocal – Non-vocal Avian Alarm Systems • General ‘scolding’ calls – Contact / chip notes given faster / louder •NOCA – Harsh repeated notes, easy to locate • CAWR, SCJA (western) • Flying predator alarms – Often high pitched, hard to locate •TUT I Avian Alarm Calling • Most species – no specialized calls – Use a basic call (chip/contact) – Faster and louder • A fair number of species have true scolding calls – harsh notes – jays, wrens, parids, vireos, and Upupa epops • Few species are known to have truly sophisticated alarm call repertoires Sophisticated Alarm Callers? • Primarily Intra-specifically Social Species – Cooperative Breeders • FL Scrub jays – Winter con-specific flocks • Paridae – Tropical flocking species – Extended parental care • Resident species Debbie Kaspari Don Balke Sophisticated Alarm Calls? • Characteristics – Convey specific types of predator dangers • Flying (potentially attacking) hawks vs • Perched predators – Urgency or degree of immediacy of threats • More versus less dangerous predators
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3/23/2011 2 Tufted Titmice • Have the most sophisticated anti-predator signaling system known among birds – I will tell you how we know that, second • But First – what led us to look for it… – We noticed that other bird species act like… • titmice are special, • worth being around, • worth listening to…. Titmice (Paridae) LEADERS -- winter foraging flocks -- predator-mobbing flocks FACILITATORS -- gap crossing -- habitat selection -- reproductive success Why? How? COMMUNICATORS -- titmice give really good information about predators!! Mixed Species Foraging Flocks Participants = passerines / woodpeckers Members of family Paridae = ‘nuclear’ species Facultative in temperate winters N.C. FL Foraging Flocks • Regular associates of titmice in winter in FL Regular Participants
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Katie - Tufted Titmouse Anti-predator Communication Network...

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