Saturday, 22 September 2012

Lemurs identify callers from nose grunts

Lemurs may be able to recognise other primate species from the nasal grunts they make, an Italian study has found.

The primates are known to make grunting calls to communicate in dense forests.

Scientists investigating three closely related species found that variations in the shape of their airways were responsible for different calls among the lemurs.

Researchers say this is the first study to link vocal tract shape to call identification in the animal kingdom.

The study is published in the International Journal of Primatology and employed techniques usually used to analyse human voices to interpret how the lemurs made their calls distinctive.

The team from the University of Torino, Italy, studied three related species: the common brown lemur, the red-bellied lemur and the black lemur.


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