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Signals And Songs

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Animal Behavior


This video shows us a little bit about the different and complex ways birds communicate. Until I watched this video I thought of a birds chirp and whistle to be annoying. I knew it was there way of talking but still didn’t appreciate it much. My opinion has defiantly done a complete flip flop though after seeing the beauty and complexity behind their ways of communicating.

There were three main ways to communicate that I saw; sound, visual display, and mimicry. Birds may use one or the other or sometimes they may use a combination of all. It all depends on the message they are attempting to send and of course the species of bird. They use these forms of communication to warn one another of danger or to warn rivals that they are trespassing. They also use them to maintain social order, to attract mates, and even to avoid violence when solving conflicts. A very interesting attribute to me was the ability birds have to see not only color but ultraviolet. Since many species feathers react to ultraviolet, differences in sex and species clearly stick out. This helps maintain order and makes recognition easier in species where there is a hierarchy. The effectiveness of sound was greatly shown when D.A. called a Magellan woodpecker by knocking on a tree. I thought that was pretty amusing but interesting at the same time. The most interesting bird and form of communication I saw was the superb lyrebird. His visual displays and appearance were awesome but the way he performed his mating call was so… I can’t think of a word to describe it, that’s how amazing it was. I’ve heard parrots mimic before but this form of mimicry was nuts. It was able to imitate not only other species, but also cameras, a car alarm and a chain saw. All of this just to impress a possible mate. It’s voice



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