Séminaire CEFE : Animal colors as behaviors: case studies of dynamic color communication in chameleons and hummingbirds

Mercredi 11 décembre 2019 – 14h00

Grande salle de réunion du CEFE | 1e étage, aile C


Kevin McGraw*, Russell Ligon, and Richard Simpson  

School of Life Sciences, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, USA



In many animals, signaling traits like bold coloration or body/ornament size are static and convey fixed attributes of an individual’s quality (e.g. development/growth, health history) to signal receivers. However, several other types of animal signals are dynamically expressed, like behaviors and songs, and reveal real-time information about the individuals producing the trait. In recent work in my lab, we have investigated signals that blur the line between these two categories of signals and show, for conspicuous coloration exhibited in two different groups of animals (chameleons and hummingbirds), how animal coloration can convey dynamic information in both mating and competitive social contexts. I will discuss these field and lab studies in hope of inspiring additional thought and work on how animal signals can exhibit both static and dynamic features. These instances require finely tuned investigations to parse the mechanistic, functional, and evolutionary underpinnings of the signals, especially when considering the complex interaction (i.e. emergent properties or composite traits) that can occur between the color itself and the behavior used to display/emphasize it.





(Seminar in English)

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