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Interactions of Multisensory Components Perceptually Rescue Túngara Frog Mating Signals

Science  06 Jun 2013:

DOI: 10.1126/science.1237113

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Abstract

Sexual signals are often complex and perceived by multiple senses. How animals integrate signal components across sensory modalities can influence signal evolution. Here, we show that two relatively unattractive signals that are perceived acoustically and visually can be combined in a pattern to form a signal that is attractive to female túngara frogs. Such unanticipated perceptual effects suggest that the evolution of complex signals can occur by alteration of the relationships among already-existing traits.

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