How to translate text using browser tools
1 April 2010 Geographic Variation in Songs of the Tree Pipit (Anthus trivialis) at Two Spatial Scales
Tereza Petrusková, Tomasz S. Osiejuk, Adam Petrusek
Author Affiliations +

We studied geographic as well as individual variation of songs in five Czech populations of the Tree Pipit (Motacillidae: Anthus trivialis), a passerine bird with a medium-sized syllable repertoire and complex song. We focused on repertoire composition at the level of syllables (the smallest invariant song units) and of structures that are potentially important in recognition among individuals (i.e., bi-syllables, or regular repetitions of two different syllables) and among populations (introductory phrases). We tested the hypotheses that the repertoires reflect local dialects (i.e., different male origins) and that within-site similarities of male repertoires are distance dependent. The populations studied differed significantly in all analyzed characteristics. Male origin explained ∼18% of the variation in individual syllable repertoires. However, no clear within-site geographic structure in repertoire similarity was observed, either between closest neighbors or on larger scales. We observed a tendency for increased syllable sharing among males in a small and dense isolated population, which is consistent with recent studies that suggest the existence of strong effects of habitat fragmentation on geographic patterns of song variation. High individual variation was observed in bi-syllable repertoires, but whether this facilitates individual recognition is unknown and in need of further study.

© 2010 by The American Ornithologists' Union. All rights reserved. Please direct all requests for permission to photocopy or reproduce article content through the University of California Press's Rights and Permissions website,
Tereza Petrusková, Tomasz S. Osiejuk, and Adam Petrusek "Geographic Variation in Songs of the Tree Pipit (Anthus trivialis) at Two Spatial Scales," The Auk 127(2), 274-282, (1 April 2010).
Received: 13 May 2009; Accepted: 1 October 2009; Published: 1 April 2010
Anthus trivialis
complex song
individual recognition
local dialects
repertoire similarity
Tree Pipit
Get copyright permission
Back to Top