Perception of cliff swallow calls by birds (Hirundo pyrrhonota and Sturnus vulgaris) and humans (Homo sapiens). Article

fiu authors


  • We tested for species differences in the perception of the cliff swallow chick begging call. One cliff swallow (Hirundo pyrrhonota), 3 European starling (Sturnus vulgaris), and 3 human (Homo sapiens) subjects were trained on go-no-go or repeating background tasks to discriminate between all possible stimulus pairs, measured by percentage of correct response and latency. We used multidimensional scaling to convert the similarity measures into a 2-dimensional map for each subject. Most of the maps were significantly correlated in Dimension 1 but not in Dimension 2. A cluster analysis separated bird and human maps. To identify the most important acoustic cues for each subject, we regressed the coordinates of each dimension on acoustic variables measured from the stimuli. For all subjects, center frequency was Dimension 1. Different acoustic cues were associated with Dimension 2, with agreement only on bandwidth, by the cliff swallow and 1 starling.

publication date

  • January 1, 1992

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

start page

  • 239

end page

  • 247


  • 106


  • 3