What is communication - PowerPoint by jackl17

VIEWS: 384 PAGES: 19

									    What is communication?
   Classical definitions
       “an action on the part of one organism (or cell) that alters
        the probability pattern of behavior in another organism (or
        cell) in a fashion adaptive to either one or both of the
        participants” – Wilson, 1975
       “Any sharing of information” – Smith, 1984
       “The transmission of a signal from one animal to another
        such that the sender benefits, on average, from the
        response of the recipient” – Slater, 1983
Possible outcomes of communication

1.   Mutual benefit – true communication
2.   Sender benefits – manipulation/deceit
3.   Receiver benefits – eavesdropping
4.   Neither benefits – Highly unlikely
• Communication
isn’t cheap
• Is the ability to
pay the COST part
of the MESSAGE?
       Levels of Communication

1.   Vegetative
2.   Tonic
3.   Phasic
4.   Signal Level (biosocial & psychosocial
5.   Symbolic (develops through social
6.   Language (abstract)
The receiver must be able to discriminate a
  signal from other background stimuli (signal
  to noise ration)
    Between species – prevention of
    Within species – important to minimize
      confusion between conspecifics
    Individual differences – individuals can be
      accurately identified
          Modalities for signal
        production and reception
1.   Mechanosensors (ex. hearing, touch)
2.   Photoreception (ex. UV vision in insects)
         Modalities for signal
       production and reception
1.   Chemoreception (ex. pheromones in
          Modalities for signal
        production and reception
1.   Electroreception (ex. many species of fish)
               Signal Function

Mate attraction
      Honest (ex. white
       crowned sparrow
      Dishonest (ex. blue
       gill sunfish) female on
       bottom, mating male
       above; female mimic
       & “sneaky” male
               Signal Function
1.   Parent-offspring interactions
        Begging
        Kin recognition (ex. mexican free tailed bats)
2.   Social integration
3.   Autocommunication (ex. echolocation)
4.   Signals about the environment (ex. Alarm calls
     in Beldings ground squirrels)
5.   Conflict resolution
The evolution of communication
       Signal behavior is established or improved in
        such a way that it becomes a more efficient
        means of communication
       Via “bricolage” the source can be virtually
        any trait including (especially?) autonomic
     Ways to elaborate displays
1.    Development of conspicuous structures
2.    Rhythmic repetition
      1.   Intensity
      2.   Exaggeration of certain component
      3.   Omission
      4.   “Freezing”
      5.   Change in sequence
3.    Change in speed of performance
4.    Change in vigor
        Key aspects of Ritualization
   Intention movements
   Displacement activities
   Redirection activities
   Secondary modifications (e.g.: intention movement to
    threat to courtship)
   Development of conspicuous structures and further
    correlation of the movement with the structures
   Schematization of the movement
       Exaggeration of certain components
       Changes in absolute and relative thresholds of components
       Changes in the coordination of the components
   Emancipation- pattern comes to be governed by causal
    factors other than those which governed it originally.
     An interesting system –
     Mexican free-tailed bats
   Mexican free tailed bats roost in caves in
    Texas, where maternity colony size
    sometimes reaches 20 million
   When a mother goes to forage she leaves
    her pup in a creche which may contain up
    to 4000 pups per square meter.
       What’s the problem?
   When a mother returns to the roost she
    must be able to identify her own offspring
   A pup will feed from any female
   For many years it was believed mothers do
    not discriminate between pups
     What’s really going on?
   Females first use spatial cues
   Pups are constantly vocalizing (sending
    signals saying “FEED ME!”)
   Females then listen for a specific
    vocalization that her pup gives, called an
    isolation call
   Olfactory signals also play an important

Song bird model is the most studied –
  involves fixed and flexible components and
  shows inherited, developmental and
  experiential influences
The End!

To top