Skip to content

Research at St Andrews

Vocal tract constancy in birds and humans

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Author(s)

Cleopatra Pike, Buddhamas Pralle Kriengwatana

School/Research organisations

Abstract

Humans perceive speech as relatively stable despite acoustic variation caused by vocal tract (VT) differences between speakers. Humans use perceptual ‘vocal tract normalisation’ (VTN) and other processes to achieve this stability. Similarity in vocal apparatus/acoustics between birds and humans means that birds might also experience VT variation. This has the potential to impede bird communication. No known studies have explicitly examined this, but a number of studies show perceptual stability or ‘perceptual constancy’ in birds similar to that seen in humans when dealing with VT variation. This review explores similarities between birds and humans and concludes that birds show sufficient evidence of perceptual constancy to warrant further research in this area. Future work should 1) quantify the multiple sources of variation in bird vocalisations, including, but not limited to VT variations, 2) determine whether vocalisations are perniciously disrupted by any of these and 3) investigate how birds reduce variation to maintain perceptual constancy and perceptual efficiency.
Close

Details

Original languageEnglish
JournalBehavioural Processes
VolumeIn press
Early online date23 Aug 2018
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 23 Aug 2018

    Research areas

  • Vocal tract normalisation, Auditory constancy, Bird song, Speech, Categorical perception, Spectral contrast, Spectral compensation effect, Auditory afterimage

Discover related content
Find related publications, people, projects and more using interactive charts.

View graph of relations

Related by journal

  1. Behavioural Processes (Journal)

    Susan Denise Healy (Editor)
    1 Sep 201431 Dec 2014

    Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditor of research journal

  2. Behavioural Processes (Journal)

    Susan Denise Healy (Member of editorial board)
    2010 → …

    Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditor of research journal

Related by journal

  1. Social learning of arbitrary food preferences in bonobos

    Shorland, G., Genty, E., Guéry, J-P. & Zuberbuhler, K., Oct 2019, In : Behavioural Processes. 167, 103912.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  2. Territorial responses to song components in a suboscine, the vermilion flycatcher

    Ríos-Chelén, A. A., Crisanto-Téllez, L. G., Quiros-Guerrero, E. & Rivera-Caceres, K. D., 22 Jun 2018, In : Behavioural Processes. In press

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  3. A duetting perspective on avian song learning

    Rivera-Cáceres, K. D. & Templeton, C. N., 25 Dec 2017, In : Behavioural Processes. In press

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

ID: 255579861

Top