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Males in numerous animal species use mating songs to attract females and intimidate competitors. We demonstrate that modulations in song amplitude are behaviourally relevant in the fruit fly Drosophila We show that Drosophilamelanogaster females prefer amplitude modulations that are typical of melanogaster song over other modulations, which suggests that amplitude modulations are processed auditorily by D. melanogaster Our work demonstrates that receivers can decode messages in amplitude modulations, complementing the recent finding that male flies actively control song amplitude. To describe amplitude modulations, we propose the concept of song amplitude structure (SAS) and discuss similarities and differences to amplitude modulation with distance (AMD).This article has an associated First Person interview with the first author of the paper.

Original publication

DOI

10.1242/bio.032003

Type

Journal article

Journal

Biol Open

Publication Date

11/06/2018

Volume

7

Keywords

Communication signals, Courtship, Drosophila, Fruit flies, Song amplitude structure