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Behav Brain Res. 2007 Sep 4;182(2):173-9. Epub 2006 Dec 28.

Dissimilarities in the vocal control over communication and echolocation calls in bats.

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Max-Planck-Institute for Psychiatry, Neurogenetics of Sleep, Kraepelinstrasse 2-10, D-80804 Munich, Germany.


Bats, like other mammals, use communication calls for social interaction, but rely at the same time on sophisticated echolocation systems for orientation and prey capture. Both call types are of laryngeal origin, but can be distinguished on the basis of their spectral and temporal features and apparently their functional involvement as well. Although they share a common final motor pathway, there is evidence that separate vocally active brainstem areas are involved in the functional control of communication and echolocation calls. This review summarizes findings that support the above assumption, and focus on the functional involvement of the periaqueductal gray, the paralemniscal area, and the nucleus of the brachium of the inferior colliculus, in differentiated vocal control.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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