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Neotropical Ichthyology

versão impressa ISSN 1679-6225


TELLECHEA, Javier S.; TEIXEIRA-DE MELLO, Franco; GONZALEZ-BERGONZONI, Iván  e  VIDAL, Nicolás. Sound production and pectoral spine locking in a Neotropical catfish (Iheringichthys labrosus, Pimelodidae). Neotrop. ichthyol. [online]. 2011, vol.9, n.4, pp.889-894.  Epub 01-Nov-2011. ISSN 1679-6225.

Catfishes may have two sonic organs: pectoral spines for stridulation and swimbladder drumming muscles. The aim of this study was to characterize the sound production of the catfish Iheringichthys labrosus. The I. labrosus male and female emits two different types of sounds: stridulatory sounds (655.8 + 230 Hz) consisting of a train of pulses, and drumming sounds (220 + 46 Hz), which are composed of single-pulse harmonic signals. Stridulatory sounds are emitted during abduction of the pectoral spine. At the base of the spine there is a dorsal process that bears a series of ridges on its latero-ventral surface, and by pressing the ridges against the groove (with an unspecialized rough surface) during a fin sweep, the animal produce a series of short pulses. Drumming sound is produced by an extrinsic sonic muscle, originated on a flat tendon of the transverse process of the fourth vertebra and inserted on the rostral and ventral surface of the swimbladder. The sounds emitted by both mechanisms are emitted in distress situation. Distress was induced by manipulating fish in a laboratory tank while sounds were recorded. Our results indicate that the catfish initially emits a stridulatory sound, which is followed by a drumming sound. Simultaneous production of stridulatory and drumming sounds was also observed. The catfish drumming sounds were lower in dominant frequency than stridulatory sounds, and also exhibited a small degree of dominant frequency modulation. Another behaviour observed in this catfish was the pectoral spine locking. This reaction was always observed before the distress sound production. Like other authors outline, our results suggest that in the catfish I. labrosus stridulatory and drumming sounds may function primarily as a distress call.

Palavras-chave : Distress call; Sonic organs; Spine erection; Stridulation sound.

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