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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2004 Dec;14(6):751-7.

Vocal communication in frogs.

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  • 1Department of Biological Sciences, MC2432, Columbia University, New York, New York 10027, USA.


The robust nature of vocal communication in frogs has long attracted the attention of natural philosophers and their biologically inclined successors. Each frog species produces distinctive calls that facilitate pre-mating reproductive isolation and thus speciation. In many terrestrial species, a chorus of simultaneously calling males attracts females to breeding sites; reproductive females then choose and locate one male, using distinctive acoustic cues. Males compete with each other vocally and sometimes physically as well. Anuran acoustic signaling systems are thus subject to the strong pressures of sexual selection. We are beginning to understand the ways in which vocal signals are produced and decoded by the nervous system and the roles of neurally active hormones in both processes.

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