Fuxjager, MJ; Fusani, L; Goller, F; Trost, L; Maat, AT; Gahr, M; Chiver, I; Ligon, RM; Chew, J; Schlinger, BA
Neuromuscular mechanisms of an elaborate wing display in the golden-collared manakin ( Manacus vitellinus ).
J Exp Biol. 2017; 220(Pt 24):4681-4688
Autor/innen der Vetmeduni Vienna:
Konrad Lorenz Institut für Vergleichende Verhaltensforschung, Abteilung für Ornithologie
- Many species perform elaborate physical displays to court mates and compete with rivals, but the biomechanical mechanisms underlying such behavior are poorly understood. We address this issue by studying the neuromuscular origins of display behavior in a small tropical passerine bird, the golden-collared manakin (Manacus vitellinus). Males of this species court females by dancing around the forest floor and rapidly snapping their wings together above their back. Using radio-telemetry, we collected electromyographic (EMG) recordings from the three main muscles that control avian forelimb movement, and found how these different muscles are activated to generate various aspects of display behavior. The muscle that raises the wing (supracoracoideus, SC) and the primary muscle that retracts the wing (scapulohumeralis caudalis, SH) were activated during the wing-snap, whereas the pectoralis (PEC), the main wing depressor, was not. SC activation began before wing elevation commenced, with further activation occurring gradually. By contrast, SH activation was swift, starting soon after wing elevation and peaking shortly after the snap. The intensity of this SH activation was comparable to that which occurs during flapping, whereas the SC activation was much lower. Thus, light activation of the SC likely helps position the wings above the back, so that quick, robust SH activation can drive these appendages together to generate the firecracker-like snap sonation. This is one of the first looks at the neuromuscular mechanisms that underlie the actuation of a dynamic courtship display, and it demonstrates that even complex, whole-body display movements can be studied with transmitter-aided EMG techniques.© 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.
Sexual Behavior, Animal