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Bats Speak With Colony Acquired Accent

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By Reuters

TEL AVIV, ISRAEL (NOVEMBER 13, 2017) (REUTERS) EGYPTIAN FRUIT BATS PROFESSOR YOSSI YOVEL OF TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY INSIDE THE BAT COLONY AT THE GARDEN FOR ZOOLOGICAL RESEARCH IN TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY YOVEL ATTEMPTING TO GRAB BAT BATS FLYING IN COLONY VARIOUS OF BATS HANGING ON CEILING IN CORNER PROFESSOR YOVEL MAKING SOUNDS AS HE ATTEMPTS TO CATCH BAT BAT HANGING FROM CEILING BATS FLYING AS PROFESSOR YOVEL GRABS ONE PROFESSOR YOVEL LOOKING AT BAT BAT BEING HELD PROFESSOR YOVEL LETTING BAT GO MAN OPENING GATE OF TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY GARDEN FOR ZOOLOGICAL RESEARCH VIEW OF SIGN REFLECTION OF BIRD IN POND VARIOUS OF BIRDS NEAR POND FLAMINGOES IN POND PROFESSOR YOSSI YOVEL OF TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY (SOUNDBITE) (English) PROFESSOR YOSSI YOVEL FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF ZOOLOGY AT TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY, SAYING: "What we did is we followed the pups, their ontogeny, their vocal ontogeny over a full year and we recorded them every few months and we followed their dialects and what we found is that each group developed a dialect that was influenced by what they heard so if we had one dialect that included more hi-pitch vocalizations we found that these pups, the pups that were exposed to this dialect, after a full year, used the dialect that was similar to the one that they heard, with more hi-pitch vocalisations." PROFESSOR YOVEL (SOUNDBITE) (English) PROFESSOR YOSSI YOVEL FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF ZOOLOGY AT TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY, SAYING: "Now more and more we find that the different mammals, including bats do use what we call vocal learning, so do incorporate components of what they hear into their future vocal repertoire. So, you know, we are very far from understanding how did this evolve in humans but every new finding gives us a little bit more insight about how this could have happened." PELICANS IN POND (SOUNDBITE) (English) PROFESSOR YOSSI YOVEL FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF ZOOLOGY AT TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY, SAYING: "One of the very interesting possible future studies we can do is to see how this acquisition of a new dialect now effects your social skills, social behaviours, so let's say, that five bats with a new dialect that is created in the lab now join a colony outside and this indeed happened because we released the bats and they joined probably colonies all around us how are these bats treated now, are they treated as foreigners and they have to stay on the side of the colony for a part of the time, do they learn, do they adopt a new dialect in the colony where they joined maybe the individuals in the colony they joined think, 'oh this is a cool dialect, let's now switch and use this dialect'. This is all unknown but very, very interesting." RESEARCHERS LISTENING TO BATS ON MONITORS VIEW OF BAT IN COLONY, ON RESEARCHERS COLONY MONITORS SHOWING BAT MORE OF RESEARCHERS LISTENING TO BATS
Dateline: 2017

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