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Social coordination in animal vocal interactions. Is there any evidence of turn-taking? The starling as an animal model.

Henry L, Craig AJ, Lemasson A, Hausberger M - Front Psychol (2015)

Bottom Line: Here we test the hypothesis that turn-taking and associated rules of conversations may be an adaptive response to the requirements of social life, by testing the applicability of turn-taking rules to an animal model, the European starling.These findings lead to solid bases of discussion on the evolution of communication rules in relation to social evolution.They will be discussed also in terms of processes, at the light of recent neurobiological findings.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Laboratoire d'éthologie animale et humaine, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, UMR 6552, Université de Rennes 1 Rennes, France.

ABSTRACT
Turn-taking in conversation appears to be a common feature in various human cultures and this universality raises questions about its biological basis and evolutionary trajectory. Functional convergence is a widespread phenomenon in evolution, revealing sometimes striking functional similarities between very distant species even though the mechanisms involved may be different. Studies on mammals (including non-human primates) and bird species with different levels of social coordination reveal that temporal and structural regularities in vocal interactions may depend on the species' social structure. Here we test the hypothesis that turn-taking and associated rules of conversations may be an adaptive response to the requirements of social life, by testing the applicability of turn-taking rules to an animal model, the European starling. Birdsong has for many decades been considered as one of the best models of human language and starling songs have been well described in terms of vocal production and perception. Starlings do have vocal interactions where alternating patterns predominate. Observational and experimental data on vocal interactions reveal that (1) there are indeed clear temporal and structural regularities, (2) the temporal and structural patterning is influenced by the immediate social context, the general social situation, the individual history, and the internal state of the emitter. Comparison of phylogenetically close species of Sturnids reveals that the alternating pattern of vocal interactions varies greatly according to the species' social structure, suggesting that interactional regularities may have evolved together with social systems. These findings lead to solid bases of discussion on the evolution of communication rules in relation to social evolution. They will be discussed also in terms of processes, at the light of recent neurobiological findings.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Experimental set-up: In the aviary room, young birds housed in the three different aviaries could hear and see each other. In the soundproof chambers, birds were housed individually or in pairs. All the experimental birds received the same auditory exposure. Birds in the soundproof chambers could hear all the songs from the birds in the aviaries via microphones and loudspeakers. (M, wild males; m, experimental males; f, experimental females; LS, loudspeaker; micro, microphone; →, direction of auditory information transfer (from Poirier et al., 2004).
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Figure 9: Experimental set-up: In the aviary room, young birds housed in the three different aviaries could hear and see each other. In the soundproof chambers, birds were housed individually or in pairs. All the experimental birds received the same auditory exposure. Birds in the soundproof chambers could hear all the songs from the birds in the aviaries via microphones and loudspeakers. (M, wild males; m, experimental males; f, experimental females; LS, loudspeaker; micro, microphone; →, direction of auditory information transfer (from Poirier et al., 2004).

Mentions: This experiment involved 26 young starlings taken from the nest in April 1998 when 2–5 days old and then hand raised for 2 months. In June 1998, they were placed in one of three situations: eleven (5 males) were placed in groups of 3 or 4 in three aviaries together with wild caught adult males in indoor aviaries; 6 (4 males) were kept in isolation and 6 (4 males) in pairs of inexperienced birds in sound proof chambers fitted with loudspeakers that transmitted the sounds from the aviary room (Figure 9). The isolated and pair raised animals could thus continuously hear the vocal interactions that occurred in the aviaries. This study was carried out in accordance with the recommendations of European Communities guidelines (European Communities Council Directive of 24 November 1986 (86/609/EEC). The protocol was approved by the local Ethic Committee in Animal experiment of Rennes (CREA-07).


Social coordination in animal vocal interactions. Is there any evidence of turn-taking? The starling as an animal model.

Henry L, Craig AJ, Lemasson A, Hausberger M - Front Psychol (2015)

Experimental set-up: In the aviary room, young birds housed in the three different aviaries could hear and see each other. In the soundproof chambers, birds were housed individually or in pairs. All the experimental birds received the same auditory exposure. Birds in the soundproof chambers could hear all the songs from the birds in the aviaries via microphones and loudspeakers. (M, wild males; m, experimental males; f, experimental females; LS, loudspeaker; micro, microphone; →, direction of auditory information transfer (from Poirier et al., 2004).
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4585254&req=5

Figure 9: Experimental set-up: In the aviary room, young birds housed in the three different aviaries could hear and see each other. In the soundproof chambers, birds were housed individually or in pairs. All the experimental birds received the same auditory exposure. Birds in the soundproof chambers could hear all the songs from the birds in the aviaries via microphones and loudspeakers. (M, wild males; m, experimental males; f, experimental females; LS, loudspeaker; micro, microphone; →, direction of auditory information transfer (from Poirier et al., 2004).
Mentions: This experiment involved 26 young starlings taken from the nest in April 1998 when 2–5 days old and then hand raised for 2 months. In June 1998, they were placed in one of three situations: eleven (5 males) were placed in groups of 3 or 4 in three aviaries together with wild caught adult males in indoor aviaries; 6 (4 males) were kept in isolation and 6 (4 males) in pairs of inexperienced birds in sound proof chambers fitted with loudspeakers that transmitted the sounds from the aviary room (Figure 9). The isolated and pair raised animals could thus continuously hear the vocal interactions that occurred in the aviaries. This study was carried out in accordance with the recommendations of European Communities guidelines (European Communities Council Directive of 24 November 1986 (86/609/EEC). The protocol was approved by the local Ethic Committee in Animal experiment of Rennes (CREA-07).

Bottom Line: Here we test the hypothesis that turn-taking and associated rules of conversations may be an adaptive response to the requirements of social life, by testing the applicability of turn-taking rules to an animal model, the European starling.These findings lead to solid bases of discussion on the evolution of communication rules in relation to social evolution.They will be discussed also in terms of processes, at the light of recent neurobiological findings.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Laboratoire d'éthologie animale et humaine, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, UMR 6552, Université de Rennes 1 Rennes, France.

ABSTRACT
Turn-taking in conversation appears to be a common feature in various human cultures and this universality raises questions about its biological basis and evolutionary trajectory. Functional convergence is a widespread phenomenon in evolution, revealing sometimes striking functional similarities between very distant species even though the mechanisms involved may be different. Studies on mammals (including non-human primates) and bird species with different levels of social coordination reveal that temporal and structural regularities in vocal interactions may depend on the species' social structure. Here we test the hypothesis that turn-taking and associated rules of conversations may be an adaptive response to the requirements of social life, by testing the applicability of turn-taking rules to an animal model, the European starling. Birdsong has for many decades been considered as one of the best models of human language and starling songs have been well described in terms of vocal production and perception. Starlings do have vocal interactions where alternating patterns predominate. Observational and experimental data on vocal interactions reveal that (1) there are indeed clear temporal and structural regularities, (2) the temporal and structural patterning is influenced by the immediate social context, the general social situation, the individual history, and the internal state of the emitter. Comparison of phylogenetically close species of Sturnids reveals that the alternating pattern of vocal interactions varies greatly according to the species' social structure, suggesting that interactional regularities may have evolved together with social systems. These findings lead to solid bases of discussion on the evolution of communication rules in relation to social evolution. They will be discussed also in terms of processes, at the light of recent neurobiological findings.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus