Acoustic orientation in the great crested newt (Triturus cristatus)

Madden, N and Jehle, R ORCID: 2016, 'Acoustic orientation in the great crested newt (Triturus cristatus)' , Amphibia-Reptilia, 38 (1) , pp. 57-65.

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We carried out laboratory experiments to determine whether orientation during migration in the great crested newt (Triturus cristatus) is influenced by acoustic information. Newts retrieved during the aquatic breeding seasons (adults), as well as during the terrestrial phase after breeding (adults and juveniles), were subjected to calls from sympatric (Rana temporaria and Bufo bufo) and allopatric (Lithobates catesbeianus) anurans. In addition to natural stimuli, we also used modified anuran calls (continuous sound with inter-note intervals removed), white noise with and without envelop, and a heterochthonous sound (pile driving). In a circular arena, adult newts retrieved both during their aquatic and terrestrial phase orientated towards the B. bufo stimulus, and migrated at random directions when exposed to the other calls; the lack of orientation towards the sympatric R. temporaria parallels a largely non-overlapping breeding season. Inexperienced juveniles did not orientate towards anuran calls, suggesting that phonotactic responses could be learned. Both aquatic as well as terrestrial adults significantly moved away from a white noise envelop. The results suggest different degrees of heterospecific call attraction across life stages, and provide evidence that unnatural sound might have an adverse effect on breeding migrations.

Item Type: Article
Schools: Schools > School of Environment and Life Sciences > Ecosystems and Environment Research Centre
Journal or Publication Title: Amphibia-Reptilia
Publisher: Kluwer
ISSN: 0173-5373
Related URLs:
Funders: Non funded research
Depositing User: R Jehle
Date Deposited: 01 Dec 2016 13:38
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2022 21:30

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