DOI: 10.1101/485490Dec 3, 2018Paper

Adaptations in the echolocation behavior of fruit-eating bats when orienting under challenging conditions

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
M Jerome BeetzJulio C Hechavarría


For orientation, echolocating bats emit biosonar calls and use echoes arising from call reflections. They often pattern their calls into groups which increases the rate of sensory feedback over time. Insectivorous bats emit call groups at a higher rate when orienting in cluttered compared to uncluttered environments. Frugivorous bats increase the rate of call group emission when they echolocate in noisy environments. Here, calls emitted by conspecifics potentially interfere with the bat's biosonar signals and complicate the echolocation behavior. To minimize the information loss followed by signal interference, bats may profit from a temporally increased sensory acquisition rate, as it is the case for the call groups. In frugivorous bats, it remains unclear if call group emission represents an exclusive adaptation to avoid interference by signals from other bats or if it represents an adaptation that allows to orient under demanding environmental conditions. Here, we compared the emission pattern of the frugivorous bat Carollia perspicillata when the bats were flying in noisy versus silent, narrow versus wide or cluttered versus non-cluttered corridors. According to our results, the bats emitted larger call groups and they incr...Continue Reading

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