German Journal of Herpetology

Lacerda, J. V. A., C. Zocca, E. G. Cafofo, A. P. de Araújo, K. H. Beard, L. F. Toledo & R. B. Ferreira

In Issues 2023

Plant-borne vibration is related to the vocal repertoire of an Atlantic Forest marsupial frog: vocalization of Fritziana tonimi (Anura: Hemiphractidae). pp. 275-283 plus Supplementary Video S1Supplementary Video S2Supplementary Video S3.

Abstract. Anurans communicate using different modes, such as acoustic, visual, and chemical signaling, which can be displayed independently or in a multimodal context. While knowledge of anuran acoustic communication has advanced substantially in recent decades, few reports have shown that amphibians communicate using seismic signals. Here we describe the vocal repertoire of the Neotropical marsupial frog, Fritziana tonimi, and report for the first-time a vocal response to a non-vocally induced plant-borne vibration in an anuran. Their advertisement call was emitted in a long call series. Calls had durations of 21–744 ms, were presented in 1–9 notes, had dominant frequencies of 2.24–3.10 kHz, and covered up to seven frequency bands. A single-pulse call resembling a short whistle was frequently emitted in response to a human touching a bromeliad leaf. We hypothesize that if F. tonimi could sense leaf movement produced by a conspecific, this call may be for reproduction or aggressive purposes. Further, this short call could have advantages over the more common long call series in that it could inform conspecifics of the presence of another male in the bromeliad while spending less energy and possibly lowering the risk of attracting predators. Future research could investigate whether other frogs communicate via seismic signals.

Key words. Amphibia, bioacoustics, seismic communication, taxonomy, Santa Teresa, Brazil.

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