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Analyzing Auditory Characteristics Of A Novel Mating Signal In Teleogryllus oceanicus

In the Pacific field cricket, Teleogryllus oceanicus, female mate choice is based on songs produced by males. Two years ago, a new song was identified by the Tinghitella Lab. It was characterized by a ‘purring’ sound, because of differences in wing morphology. The recent nature of the discovery presents a unique opportunity to observe possible divergence of both the novel mating signal and female auditory preferences to see if a divergence of mating signals leads to reproductive isolation. Characterization of this ‘courtship’ song was completed over a year-long period to get a greater understanding for sonic characteristics for the “purring” males sound. Recordings from the field and the lab used a standardized microphone set up. Substantial differences should exist in important characteristics for this mating signal. This research is ongoing, but if it yields results, the information could be used to design a more ‘inviting’ purring song for future lab research. It could also be one of the first steps to observing reproductive isolation in real time.

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