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No. 38: Mar-Apr 1985

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Listening With The Feet

"Male white-lipped frogs exhibit conspicuous behavioral responses to calling conspecific males that are nearby but out of view. Since the calls often are accompanied by strong seismic signals (thumps), and since the male white-lipped frog exhibits the most acute sensitivity to seismic stimuli yet observed in any animal, these animals may use seismic signals as well as auditory signals for intraspecific communication."

(Lewis, Edwin R., and Narins, Peter M.; "Do Frogs Communicate with Seismic Signals?" Science, 227:187, 1985.)

Comment. Rabbits often thump the ground to communicate, but their thumps are thought to be sound generators rather than vibration generators.

From Science Frontiers #38, MAR-APR 1985. � 1985-2000 William R. Corliss