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The Vocal Repertoire of the Adult Senegal Bushbaby (Galago Senegalensis Senegalensis)

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image of Behaviour

Acoustic structures, situations and proposed messages of vocalisations used by the nocturnal arboreal prosimian species Galago senegalensis senegalensis are described. Eighteen different sounds are identified which could be related to one of the following functional categories: contact, aggressive and defensive and attention and alarm behaviour. The call types within these behavioural categories show striking similarities in their acoustic structures. Vocalisations used during inter- and intragroup contact situations demonstrate harmonic spectra with low frequency fundamentals and formants and slight frequency modulations. Noisy spectra as well as an irregular repetition rate characterize sounds uttered by the aggressor during agonistic encounters. They can be intensified by visual threat displays. Harmonic spectra, high frequency fundamentals and formants, and rapid frequency modulations are typical for calls given by submissives during aggressive intraspecific interactions. Sounds which indicate social or external disturbance factors show noisy and harmonic spectra with broad dominant frequency range as well as a regular repetition rate. Factors that might have favoured the evolution of this call system are discussed.

Affiliations: 1: (Department of Zoology, University of Stuttgart-Hohenheim, 7000 Stuttgart 70, West Germany


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