Peafowl antipredator calls encode information about signalers. Academic Article uri icon


  • Animals emit vocalizations that convey information about external events. Many of these vocalizations, including those emitted in response to predators, also encode information about the individual that produced the call. The relationship between acoustic features of antipredator calls and information relating to signalers (including sex, identity, body size, and social rank) were examined in peafowl (Pavo cristatus). The "bu-girk" antipredator calls of male and female peafowl were recorded and 20 acoustic parameters were automatically extracted from each call. Both the bu and girk elements of the antipredator call were individually distinctive and calls were classified to the correct signaler with over 90% and 70% accuracy in females and males, respectively. Females produced calls with a higher fundamental frequency (F0) than males. In both females and males, body size was negatively correlated with F0. In addition, peahen rank was related to the duration, end mean frequency, and start harmonicity of the bu element. Peafowl antipredator calls contain detailed information about the signaler and can potentially be used by receivers to respond to dangerous situations.

published proceedings

  • J Acoust Soc Am

author list (cited authors)

  • Yorzinski, J. L.

citation count

  • 6

complete list of authors

  • Yorzinski, Jessica L

publication date

  • February 2014