Developmental characteristics in utterance temporal parameters by vocal learners: a comparative study in human infants and young songbirds

[Speaker] Takahasi, Miki:1,2
[Co-author] Okanoya, Kazuo:3, Mazuka, Reiko:1
1:RIKEN BSI (Japan), 2:JSPS Research Fellow (Japan), 3:The University of Tokyo (Japan)

Humans and songbirds are both vocal learners. Our goal was to answer whether developmental characteristics of the temporal parameters were shared in birds and humans. We analyzed three temporal features of successive vocalizations in human infants and in fledged Bengalese finches, one of songbird species; 1) Note duration (ND; vocalizations with expirations), 2) Inter-onset-interval (IOI; between the onset of the preceding note and the onset of the following note) and 3) Inter-note-interval (INI; silent period without any vocalizations). In human infants, the distribution of IOI became diverse before babblings and then the distribution converged into the same range with the early phase. In fledged Bengalese finches, frequency distributions of temporal parameters widely spread in an early stage. Through the development, these distributions gradually converged. These results suggested that the human infants and songbirds may fundamentally be different in their strategies to control both the respiration and the vocalization.
Advanced Search