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The vocal repertoire in a solitary foraging carnivore, Cynictis penicillata, may reflect facultative sociality


Le Roux, A; Cherry, M I; Manser, M B (2009). The vocal repertoire in a solitary foraging carnivore, Cynictis penicillata, may reflect facultative sociality. Naturwissenschaften, 96(5):575-584.

Abstract

We describe the vocal repertoire of a facultatively social carnivore, the yellow mongoose, Cynictis penicillata. Using a combination of close-range observations, recordings, and experiments with simulated predators, we were able to obtain clear descriptions of call structure and function for a wide range of calls used by this herpestid. The vocal repertoire of the yellow mongooses comprised ten call types, half of which were used in appeasing or fearful contexts, and half in aggressive interactions. Data from this study suggest that the yellow mongoose uses an urgency-based alarm calling system, indicating high and low urgency through two distinct call types. Compared to solitary mongooses, the yellow mongoose has a large proportion of friendly vocalizations that enhance group cohesion, but its vocal repertoire is smaller and less context-specific than those of obligate social species. This study of the vocal repertoire of the yellow mongoose is, to our knowledge, the mo
st complete to have been conducted on a facultatively social species in its natural habitat.

Abstract

We describe the vocal repertoire of a facultatively social carnivore, the yellow mongoose, Cynictis penicillata. Using a combination of close-range observations, recordings, and experiments with simulated predators, we were able to obtain clear descriptions of call structure and function for a wide range of calls used by this herpestid. The vocal repertoire of the yellow mongooses comprised ten call types, half of which were used in appeasing or fearful contexts, and half in aggressive interactions. Data from this study suggest that the yellow mongoose uses an urgency-based alarm calling system, indicating high and low urgency through two distinct call types. Compared to solitary mongooses, the yellow mongoose has a large proportion of friendly vocalizations that enhance group cohesion, but its vocal repertoire is smaller and less context-specific than those of obligate social species. This study of the vocal repertoire of the yellow mongoose is, to our knowledge, the mo
st complete to have been conducted on a facultatively social species in its natural habitat.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
590 Animals (Zoology)
Uncontrolled Keywords:Mongoose, Sociality, Urgency based, Vocal repertoire
Language:English
Date:May 2009
Deposited On:08 Jun 2009 13:12
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 13:14
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0028-1042
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s00114-008-0506-5

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