Sunday, 27 December 2015

Bats found to produce longer and more intense calls when crowded by other bats

December 24, 2015 by Bob Yirka report


Big eared townsend bat (Corynorhinus townsendii)
 Credit: Public Domain
(Phys.org)—A trio of researchers with Tel-Aviv University has found that bats produce calls that are longer and more intense when among a crowd of others of their own kind as a means to hear themselves among the din. In their paper published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B, Eran Amichai, Gaddi Blumrosen and Yossi Yovel describe lab experiments they conducted with trained bats to learn more about how bats contend with noise from surrounding bats.

Bats famously use echo-location to avoid colliding with objects while flying and to zero in on moving prey such as insects, but how do they recognize their own echoed pings when traveling or hunting with a large group of other bats, all of whom are sending out pings of their own, creating a lot of competing noise? That is what the researchers with this new effort sought to learn. Some have suggested that the bats simply change the frequency of their tone, so that it can be differentiated from other bats, but no one had ever tested this theory.


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