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1.
Can J Exp Psychol ; 74(3): 170-175, 2020 Sep.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33090846

RESUMO

There are some historical divisions in methods, rationales, and purposes between studies on comparative cognition and behavioural ecology. In turn, the interaction between these two branches and studies from mathematics, computation, and neuroscience is not usual. In this short piece, we attempt to build bridges among these disciplines. We present a series of interconnected vignettes meant to illustrate what a more interdisciplinary approach looks like when successful, and its advantages. Concretely, we focus on a recent topic, namely animal rhythms in interaction, studied under different approaches. We showcase 5 research efforts, which we believe successfully link 5 particular scientific areas of rhythm research conceptualised as the following: social neuroscience, detailed rhythmic quantification, ontogeny, computational approaches, and spontaneous interactions. Our suggestions will hopefully spur a "comparative rhythms in interaction" field, which can integrate and capitalize on knowledge from zoology, comparative psychology, neuroscience, and computation. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).

2.
Nat Commun ; 11(1): 4970, 2020 10 02.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33009414

RESUMO

Communicating species identity is a key component of many animal signals. However, whether selection for species recognition systematically increases signal diversity during clade radiation remains debated. Here we show that in woodpecker drumming, a rhythmic signal used during mating and territorial defense, the amount of species identity information encoded remained stable during woodpeckers' radiation. Acoustic analyses and evolutionary reconstructions show interchange among six main drumming types despite strong phylogenetic contingencies, suggesting evolutionary tinkering of drumming structure within a constrained acoustic space. Playback experiments and quantification of species discriminability demonstrate sufficient signal differentiation to support species recognition in local communities. Finally, we only find character displacement in the rare cases where sympatric species are also closely related. Overall, our results illustrate how historical contingencies and ecological interactions can promote conservatism in signals during a clade radiation without impairing the effectiveness of information transfer relevant to inter-specific discrimination.


Assuntos
Comunicação Animal , Evolução Biológica , Passeriformes/fisiologia , Acústica , Animais , Ecossistema , Teoria da Informação , Filogenia , Especificidade da Espécie , Simpatria
3.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 117(38): 23223-23224, 2020 09 22.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32967065
4.
Top Cogn Sci ; 12(3): 843-858, 2020 07.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32729673

RESUMO

Learning and processing natural language requires the ability to track syntactic relationships between words and phrases in a sentence, which are often separated by intervening material. These nonadjacent dependencies can be studied using artificial grammar learning paradigms and structured sequence processing tasks. These approaches have been used to demonstrate that human adults, infants and some nonhuman animals are able to detect and learn dependencies between nonadjacent elements within a sequence. However, learning nonadjacent dependencies appears to be more cognitively demanding than detecting dependencies between adjacent elements, and only occurs in certain circumstances. In this review, we discuss different types of nonadjacent dependencies in language and in artificial grammar learning experiments, and how these differences might impact learning. We summarize different types of perceptual cues that facilitate learning, by highlighting the relationship between dependent elements bringing them closer together either physically, attentionally, or perceptually. Finally, we review artificial grammar learning experiments in human adults, infants, and nonhuman animals, and discuss how similarities and differences observed across these groups can provide insights into how language is learned across development and how these language-related abilities might have evolved.

5.
Biol Lett ; 16(7): 20200081, 2020 07.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32634374

RESUMO

Acoustic allometry is the study of how animal vocalizations reflect their body size. A key aim of this research is to identify outliers to acoustic allometry principles and pinpoint the evolutionary origins of such outliers. A parallel strand of research investigates species capable of vocal learning, the experience-driven ability to produce novel vocal signals through imitation or modification of existing vocalizations. Modification of vocalizations is a common feature found when studying both acoustic allometry and vocal learning. Yet, these two fields have only been investigated separately to date. Here, we review and connect acoustic allometry and vocal learning across mammalian clades, combining perspectives from bioacoustics, anatomy and evolutionary biology. Based on this, we hypothesize that, as a precursor to vocal learning, some species might have evolved the capacity for volitional vocal modulation via sexual selection for 'dishonest' signalling. We provide preliminary support for our hypothesis by showing significant associations between allometric deviation and vocal learning in a dataset of 164 mammals. Our work offers a testable framework for future empirical research linking allometric principles with the evolution of vocal learning.


Assuntos
Acústica , Vocalização Animal , Animais , Tamanho Corporal , Mamíferos
6.
Anim Cogn ; 23(5): 851-859, 2020 Sep.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32388781

RESUMO

Timing is an essential parameter influencing many behaviours. A previous study demonstrated a high sensitivity of a phocid, the harbour seal (Phoca vitulina), in discriminating time intervals. In the present study, we compared the harbour seal's timing abilities with the timing abilities of an otariid, the South African fur seal (Arctocephalus pusillus pusillus). This comparison seemed essential as phocids and otariids differ in many respects and might, thus, also differ regarding their timing abilities. We determined time difference thresholds for sub- and suprasecond time intervals marked by a white circle on a black background displayed for a specific time interval on a monitor using a staircase method. Contrary to our expectation, the timing abilities of the fur seal and the harbour seal were comparable. Over a broad range of time intervals, 0.8-7 s in the fur seal and 0.8-30 s in the harbour seal, the difference thresholds followed Weber's law. In this range, both animals could discriminate time intervals differing only by 12 % and 14 % on average. Timing might, thus be a fundamental cue for pinnipeds in general to be used in various contexts, thereby complementing information provided by classical sensory systems. Future studies will help to clarify if timing is indeed involved in foraging decisions or the estimation of travel speed or distance.


Assuntos
Otárias , Phoca , Percepção do Tempo , Animais
7.
Sci Rep ; 10(1): 451, 2020 01 16.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31949223

RESUMO

One of the most controversial hypotheses in cognitive science is the Chomskyan evolutionary conjecture that language arose instantaneously in humans through a single mutation. Here we analyze the evolutionary dynamics implied by this hypothesis, which has never been formalized before. The hypothesis supposes the emergence and fixation of a single mutant (capable of the syntactic operation Merge) during a narrow historical window as a result of frequency-independent selection under a huge fitness advantage in a population of an effective size no larger than ~15 000 individuals. We examine this proposal by combining diffusion analysis and extreme value theory to derive a probabilistic formulation of its dynamics. We find that although a macro-mutation is much more likely to go to fixation if it occurs, it is much more unlikely a priori than multiple mutations with smaller fitness effects. The most likely scenario is therefore one where a medium number of mutations with medium fitness effects accumulate. This precise analysis of the probability of mutations occurring and going to fixation has not been done previously in the context of the evolution of language. Our results cast doubt on any suggestion that evolutionary reasoning provides an independent rationale for a single-mutant theory of language.


Assuntos
Evolução Biológica , Idioma , Modelos Biológicos , Mutação , Humanos , Probabilidade
8.
Sci Rep ; 9(1): 18914, 2019 12 12.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31831862

RESUMO

Dance is an icon of human expression. Despite astounding diversity around the world's cultures and dazzling abundance of reminiscent animal systems, the evolution of dance in the human clade remains obscure. Dance requires individuals to interactively synchronize their whole-body tempo to their partner's, with near-perfect precision. This capacity is motorically-heavy, engaging multiple neural circuitries, but also dependent on an acute socio-emotional bond between partners. Hitherto, these factors helped explain why no dance forms were present amongst nonhuman primates. Critically, evidence for conjoined full-body rhythmic entrainment in great apes that could help reconstruct possible proto-stages of human dance is still lacking. Here, we report an endogenously-effected case of ritualized dance-like behaviour between two captive chimpanzees - synchronized bipedalism. We submitted video recordings to rigorous time-series analysis and circular statistics. We found that individual step tempo was within the genus' range of "solo" bipedalism. Between-individual analyses, however, revealed that synchronisation between individuals was non-random, predictable, phase concordant, maintained with instantaneous centi-second precision and jointly regulated, with individuals also taking turns as "pace-makers". No function was apparent besides the behaviour's putative positive social affiliation. Our analyses show a first case of spontaneous whole-body entrainment between two ape peers, thus providing tentative empirical evidence for phylogenies of human dance. Human proto-dance, we argue, may have been rooted in mechanisms of social cohesion among small groups that might have granted stress-releasing benefits via gait-synchrony and mutual-touch. An external sound/musical beat may have been initially uninvolved. We discuss dance evolution as driven by ecologically-, socially- and/or culturally-imposed "captivity".


Assuntos
Dança , Relações Interpessoais , Movimento/fisiologia , Comportamento Social , Animais , Feminino , Pan troglodytes
9.
Ann N Y Acad Sci ; 1453(1): 12-21, 2019 10.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31515817

RESUMO

The study of human language is progressively moving toward comparative and interactive frameworks, extending the concept of turn-taking to animal communication. While such an endeavor will help us understand the interactive origins of language, any theoretical account for cross-species turn-taking should consider three key points. First, animal turn-taking must incorporate biological studies on animal chorusing, namely how different species coordinate their signals over time. Second, while concepts employed in human communication and turn-taking, such as intentionality, are still debated in animal behavior, lower level mechanisms with clear neurobiological bases can explain much of animal interactive behavior. Third, social behavior, interactivity, and cooperation can be orthogonal, and the alternation of animal signals need not be cooperative. Considering turn-taking a subset of chorusing in the rhythmic dimension may avoid overinterpretation and enhance the comparability of future empirical work.


Assuntos
Comunicação Animal , Evolução Biológica , Comportamento Cooperativo , Idioma , Animais , Humanos , Fala
10.
Anim Cogn ; 22(5): 825-838, 2019 Sep.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31264123

RESUMO

Strategies used in artificial grammar learning can shed light into the abilities of different species to extract regularities from the environment. In the A(X)nB rule, A and B items are linked, but assigned to different positional categories and separated by distractor items. Open questions are how widespread is the ability to extract positional regularities from A(X)nB patterns, which strategies are used to encode positional regularities and whether individuals exhibit preferences for absolute or relative position encoding. We used visual arrays to investigate whether cotton-top tamarins (Saguinusoedipus) can learn this rule and which strategies they use. After training on a subset of exemplars, two of the tested monkeys successfully generalized to novel combinations. These tamarins discriminated between categories of tokens with different properties (A, B, X) and detected a positional relationship between non-adjacent items even in the presence of novel distractors. The pattern of errors revealed that successful subjects used visual similarity with training stimuli to solve the task and that successful tamarins extracted the relative position of As and Bs rather than their absolute position, similarly to what has been observed in other species. Relative position encoding appears to be favoured in different tasks and taxa. Generalization, though, was incomplete, since we observed a failure with items that during training had always been presented in reinforced arrays, showing the limitations in grasping the underlying positional rule. These results suggest the use of local strategies in the extraction of positional rules in cotton-top tamarins.


Assuntos
Aprendizagem , Reforço Psicológico , Saguinus , Animais , Feminino , Masculino , Movimento
11.
Ann N Y Acad Sci ; 1453(1): 79-98, 2019 10.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31237365

RESUMO

Why does human speech have rhythm? As we cannot travel back in time to witness how speech developed its rhythmic properties and why humans have the cognitive skills to process them, we rely on alternative methods to find out. One powerful tool is the comparative approach: studying the presence or absence of cognitive/behavioral traits in other species to determine which traits are shared between species and which are recent human inventions. Vocalizations of many species exhibit temporal structure, but little is known about how these rhythmic structures evolved, are perceived and produced, their biological and developmental bases, and communicative functions. We review the literature on rhythm in speech and animal vocalizations as a first step toward understanding similarities and differences across species. We extend this review to quantitative techniques that are useful for computing rhythmic structure in acoustic sequences and hence facilitate cross-species research. We report links between vocal perception and motor coordination and the differentiation of rhythm based on hierarchical temporal structure. While still far from a complete cross-species perspective of speech rhythm, our review puts some pieces of the puzzle together.


Assuntos
Idioma , Periodicidade , Fala/fisiologia , Vocalização Animal/fisiologia , Animais , Evolução Biológica , Humanos
12.
Iperception ; 10(2): 2041669519846135, 2019.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31065333

RESUMO

Comparative research investigating how nonhuman animals generalize patterns of auditory stimuli often uses sequences of human speech syllables and reports limited generalization abilities in animals. Here, we reverse this logic, testing humans with stimulus sequences tailored to squirrel monkeys. When test stimuli are familiar (human voices), humans succeed in two types of generalization. However, when the same structural rule is instantiated over unfamiliar but perceivable sounds within squirrel monkeys' optimal hearing frequency range, human participants master only one type of generalization. These findings have methodological implications for the design of comparative experiments, which should be fair towards all tested species' proclivities and limitations.

13.
Evol Hum Behav ; 40(2): 214-221, 2019 Mar.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31007503

RESUMO

Recognizing that two elements within a sequence of variable length depend on each other is a key ability in understanding the structure of language and music. Perception of such interdependencies has previously been documented in chimpanzees in the visual domain and in human infants and common squirrel monkeys with auditory playback experiments, but it remains unclear whether it typifies primates in general. Here, we investigated the ability of common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus) to recognize and respond to such dependencies. We tested subjects in a familiarization-discrimination playback experiment using stimuli composed of pure tones that either conformed or did not conform to a grammatical rule. After familiarization to sequences with dependencies, marmosets spontaneously discriminated between sequences containing and lacking dependencies ('consistent' and 'inconsistent', respectively), independent of stimulus length. Marmosets looked more often to the sound source when hearing sequences consistent with the familiarization stimuli, as previously found in human infants. Crucially, looks were coded automatically by computer software, avoiding human bias. Our results support the hypothesis that the ability to perceive dependencies at variable distances was already present in the common ancestor of all anthropoid primates (Simiiformes).

14.
Evol Bioinform Online ; 15: 1176934318823558, 2019.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30733626

RESUMO

Time is one crucial dimension conveying information in animal communication. Evolution has shaped animals' nervous systems to produce signals with temporal properties fitting their socio-ecological niches. Many quantitative models of mechanisms underlying rhythmic behaviour exist, spanning insects, crustaceans, birds, amphibians, and mammals. However, these computational and mathematical models are often presented in isolation. Here, we provide an overview of the main mathematical models employed in the study of animal rhythmic communication among conspecifics. After presenting basic definitions and mathematical formalisms, we discuss each individual model. These computational models are then compared using simulated data to uncover similarities and key differences in the underlying mechanisms found across species. Our review of the empirical literature is admittedly limited. We stress the need of using comparative computer simulations - both before and after animal experiments - to better understand animal timing in interaction. We hope this article will serve as a potential first step towards a common computational framework to describe temporal interactions in animals, including humans.

15.
Curr Zool ; 65(1): 77-81, 2019 Feb.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30697242
16.
Curr Zool ; 65(1): 107-120, 2019 Feb.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30697246

RESUMO

Puppyhood is a very active social and vocal period in a harbor seal's life Phoca vitulina. An important feature of vocalizations is their temporal and rhythmic structure, and understanding vocal timing and rhythms in harbor seals is critical to a cross-species hypothesis in evolutionary neuroscience that links vocal learning, rhythm perception, and synchronization. This study utilized analytical techniques that may best capture rhythmic structure in pup vocalizations with the goal of examining whether (1) harbor seal pups show rhythmic structure in their calls and (2) rhythms evolve over time. Calls of 3 wild-born seal pups were recorded daily over the course of 1-3 weeks; 3 temporal features were analyzed using 3 complementary techniques. We identified temporal and rhythmic structure in pup calls across different time windows. The calls of harbor seal pups exhibit some degree of temporal and rhythmic organization, which evolves over puppyhood and resembles that of other species' interactive communication. We suggest next steps for investigating call structure in harbor seal pups and propose comparative hypotheses to test in other pinniped species.

17.
J Comp Psychol ; 133(2): 272-277, 2019 05.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30550302

RESUMO

Alternative mathematical models predict differences in how animals adjust the timing of their calls. Differences can be measured as the effect of the timing of a conspecific call on the rate and period of calling of a focal animal, and the lag between the two. Here, I test these alternative hypotheses by tapping into harbor seals' (Phoca vitulina) mechanisms for spontaneous timing. Both socioecology and vocal behavior of harbor seals make them an interesting model species to study call rhythm and timing. Here, a wild-born seal pup was tested in controlled laboratory conditions. Based on previous recordings of her vocalizations and those of others, I designed playback experiments adapted to that specific animal. The call onsets of the animal were measured as a function of tempo, rhythmic regularity, and spectral properties of the playbacks. The pup adapted the timing of her calls in response to conspecifics' calls. Rather than responding at a fixed time delay, the pup adjusted her calls' onset to occur at a fraction of the playback tempo, showing a relative-phase antisynchrony. Experimental results were confirmed via computational modeling. This case study lends preliminary support to a classic mathematical model of animal behavior-Hamilton's selfish herd-in the acoustic domain. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved).


Assuntos
Modelos Teóricos , Phoca/fisiologia , Comportamento Social , Vocalização Animal/fisiologia , Acústica , Animais , Feminino , Fatores de Tempo
18.
Front Comput Neurosci ; 12: 86, 2018.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30555314

RESUMO

One curious aspect of human timing is the organization of rhythmic patterns in small integer ratios. Behavioral and neural research has shown that adjacent time intervals in rhythms tend to be perceived and reproduced as approximate fractions of small numbers (e.g., 3/2). Recent work on iterated learning and reproduction further supports this: given a randomly timed drum pattern to reproduce, participants subconsciously transform it toward small integer ratios. The mechanisms accounting for this "attractor" phenomenon are little understood, but might be explained by combining two theoretical frameworks from psychophysics. The scalar expectancy theory describes time interval perception and reproduction in terms of Weber's law: just detectable durational differences equal a constant fraction of the reference duration. The notion of categorical perception emphasizes the tendency to perceive time intervals in categories, i.e., "short" vs. "long." In this piece, we put forward the hypothesis that the integer-ratio bias in rhythm perception and production might arise from the interaction of the scalar property of timing with the categorical perception of time intervals, and that neurally it can plausibly be related to oscillatory activity. We support our integrative approach with mathematical derivations to formalize assumptions and provide testable predictions. We present equations to calculate durational ratios by: (i) parameterizing the relationship between durational categories, (ii) assuming a scalar timing constant, and (iii) specifying one (of K) category of ratios. Our derivations provide the basis for future computational, behavioral, and neurophysiological work to test our model.

19.
Trends Ecol Evol ; 33(10): 716-719, 2018 10.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30126619

RESUMO

Humans devote ample time to produce and perceive music. How and why this behavioral propensity originated in our species is unknown. For centuries, speculation dominated the study of the evolutionary origins of musicality. Following Darwin's early intuitions, recent empirical research is opening a new chapter to tackle this mystery.


Assuntos
Evolução Biológica , Preferência de Acasalamento Animal , Música , Animais , Humanos
20.
BMC Res Notes ; 11(1): 376, 2018 06 11.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29890996

RESUMO

Following publication of the original article [1], the author reported an error in the first sentence of the 'Sound recordings' section. The recordings mentioned in this sentence were performed 6 days later than written. In this Correction article the original and corrected version of the sentence are presented.

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