Topic: Compare and contrast the mating signals of two very different vertebrate orders: anurans (frogs and toads) and passerines (songbirds). What features do the anuran and passerine mating vocalizations share in common? What features are different? Discuss the mating signals themselves (acoustic structure, including elements and complexity), as well as how (anatomy and physiology) and why (sociology) those particular vocalizations are produced (by speaker) and preferred (by listener). This discussion should include comparison of the physical and social environments in which frogs and songbirds live and what kinds of socio-ecological problems each is required to solve. Your analysis should address at least two of Tinbergen’s four perspectives on animal behavior: adaptation, mechanism, ontogeny, andphylogeny.
Guidelines: Essays are assessed not only for content, but also for grammar, clarity, conciseness, and coherence. Strive to make your essays accurate, relevant, and organized, and use academic English. Your writing should demonstrate an understanding of key scientific terms related to sound and communication, with accurate use of technical terms such as amplitude, spectrum, conspecific, heterospecific, etc. For source material, you may draw on a mix of course lectures, videos and assigned readings, but to earn full credit, you must include material from (and cite) at least two articles from the relevant course readings (attachments below)
Formatting and Submission
- Provide your own original, descriptive title for your essay. (Do not simply copy and paste Frogs and Birds.)
- Your essay must be a minimum of 1200 words long, but no longer than 1500 words. Include the word count in your document. You may use the formal citation style of your choice APA or MLA, so long as you are consistent and the source and page number of the material is made clear. As with any academic writing, your work must be your own and in your own words.
- Document formatting should use a 12-point font, double-spaced, have 1-inch margins on all sides, and be saved in either doc/.docx or .pdf format only. Documents in shared drives will not be accepted.
- Your document should include your last name, first name, course name and section at the top of the document.
- The essay must be uploaded to Turnitin
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