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Short first click intervals in echolocation trains of three species of deep diving odontocetes

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Abstract

All odontocetes produce echolocation clicks as part of their vocal repertoire. In this paper we analysed inter-click-intervals in recordings from suction cup tags with a focus on the first inter-click interval of each click train. We refer to shorter first inter-click intervals as short first intervals (SFIs). We found that the context of SFI occurrence varies across three deep-diving species. In Blainville’s beaked whales, 87% of click trains that were preceded by a terminal buzz started with SFIs. In Cuvier’s beaked whales, only sub-adult animals produced notable amounts of SFIs. In contrast, sperm whales were much more likely to produce SFIs on the first click train of a dive. While the physiological and/or behavioural reasons for SFI click production are unknown, species differences in their production could provide a window into the evolution of odontocete echolocation.
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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)900-907
JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
Volume141
Issue number2
Early online date17 Feb 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2017

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