Singing For Survival: Gibbons Scare Off Predators With ‘Song’

998 words - 4 pages

This article discusses the form of communication that Gibbon monkeys use amongst their species. The argument that appears to be present throughout this article is that Gibbons are not only able to communicate with each other, but also that their communication system shares certain features with the human language system. Although I agree that this species’ communication system shares particular design features with the human language, the definition of language attests that this type of communication is not considered a language.
The first of the five core design features discussed throughout this paper is semanticity. Semanticity is defined as specific sound signals that are ...view middle of the document...

49-57). Humans are able to produce an infinite number of diverse messages by combining the elements of language in different ways. This does not exist among Gibbons because although they are able to use combinations of calls in different contexts to relay new information, these said calls are of a finite set of repetitive and familiar calls ("Singing for Survival," 2006). However, I would argue the part of this design feature that deems this species’ communication as a definite, closed system. For instance, researchers describe Gibbon songs as including varying pitches that they use to combine up to seven notes to create more complex structures or phrases ("Singing for Survival," 2006). In the human language system, the meaning of symbols and/or signals vary depending on certain contexts and situations. It appears that Gibbons have some capability to change their songs based on different situations they are engaging in such mating, warnings, etc. Therefore, I’ve concluded that these abilities demonstrate a certain amount of productivity. However, this species does not the competency to use an unlimited amount of utterances, which would essentially eliminate them from fully having this design feature in their communication system.
Displacement is a design feature of language that we as humans are able to use to reference the past, future, and the hypothetical. It refers to the human language system’s ability to communicate about things that are not present spatially, temporally, and/or realistically. According to “Language Matters”, displacement is defined as the ability to talk about events remote in time and place (Bauer, 2006, pp. 49-57). Although it is often said that this particular design feature is unique to human language, Gibbon monkeys seems to also share the ability of displacement. In the article it states, the Gibbons appear to use their songs not just to warn their own group members of predators but also those that are in neighboring areas. It also appears that Gibbons use loud ‘long-distance’ calls to warn relatives in other areas and those relatives respond by joining in the singing and matching the correct predator song ("Singing...

Find Another Essay On Singing for Survival: Gibbons scare off Predators with ‘Song’

Study notes on the basic animal behaviors and the processes involved with these behaviors

553 words - 2 pages scare off predators, even though they have no defense mechanisms-Mimicry helps prey escape predators by making the prey seem dangerous-Mimicry also protects animals with defense mechanisms (Mullerian) because predators quickly learn that certain coloring mean trouble-Mimicry can help predators appear as something different to their prey and lure the prey in for them to eat-Mimicry also helps plants pollinate in some cases when flowers resemble

Complex Language Usage in Non-Human Species

994 words - 4 pages terms. The range of descriptors for different predators, ability to combine sounds to create entirely new descriptions for never before seen stimuli, and the passing on of language from one generation of prairie dog to the next is very similar to the complexity of human language. Another animal with complex language structure is the humpback whale. Humpback whales emit low frequency sounds in sequences that form “songs”. Song sessions can last 20

Kaye Gibbons' Ellen Foster

4039 words - 16 pages . Her father, who is not concerned at all, tells Ellen to let her be, she would sleep it off. Ellen wanted to call for help but her father threatens to kill her if she does. So Ellen sat with her mother until she passed. Ellen dealt with her hardships better than most young girls. She became a heroine and became great at survival. She overcame great obstacles and fights, against all odds, her way to happiness. The book is a work of

butterflys evolution

974 words - 4 pages imitate their surroundings; a particularly good example is with the green hairstreak. These butterflies have wings that are shaped and colored to appear precisely just like the leaves where the butterfly is found on; implicating that it is extremely more difficult for predators to find. A lot of butterflies have developed eye spots on their wings. These eye spots provide the butterfly the facade of a much bigger species, scaring off any potential

Heroism in Watchmen

1198 words - 5 pages . He first became a member of the New York police department, a decision inspired by the “basic notions of decency that were passed down directly from [his grandfather]” (Moore and Gibbons I, 30). Hollis also adds: “Nevertheless, some of the things that I saw in the city during my first few years here filled me with a sort of ethical revulsion that I couldn’t shake off. To some degree, I still can’t” (Moore and Gibbons I, 30). It is this statement

Anthropology Lab, a scientific project about White Handed Gibbions, (Apes) and explores their grooming habbits

834 words - 3 pages referred to as "Honey" and the female as, "Coco" for purposes of identification which where required before the definite sex was determined by this observer.Materials and MethodsTwo adult White-handed gibbons were observed in an outdoor enclosure, which spawned about 20 X 30 feet, and stood about 35 feet high. The enclosure was furnished with braches from about five feet off the ground to the very top of the enclosure and two trees. There are tow

The Story of Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt

701 words - 3 pages greatly associated with competing for business with individuals and companies. Cornelius Vanderbilt was truly one of a kind; he dominated many companies and people. It ultimately brought him to the pinnacle of the period in which he lived. He was looked at, as a godly figure in the business world, especially for his strategic success in dominating his rivals, also for his inseparable morals. In the prime of Vanderbilt’s life, Thomas Gibbons “an heir

How my bad singing affected my outlook on music

537 words - 2 pages outlets for my music abilities. When my Girl Scout troop went on camping trips all of us would pile into a van with our troop counselors. We spent most of the hour or so drive singing along to Disney movie soundtracks. With five other girls singing along to the tapes, my voice was not heard. When a troop leader went to switch the cassette a song came on the radio that only I knew. I belted out the lyrics with all my force and ability to hit those

Loving Love

1597 words - 7 pages . This also means that there is a lot of consonance in the songs. I believe this song is played in octaves. The tonic to this song seems to be the not that is played exactly at 1:23 -1:25. The song keeps coming back to that exact not making it home base for the song. Expressions: Both songs to me are great and express how I feel in many ways. The first song comes off with more sad emotions, whereas, the second song comes off as happy. The

How the Struggle Against the Interstate Slave Trade Led to the Civil War

1733 words - 7 pages if not for the ruling in this case. Ogden did not originally want to partner with Livingston and Fulton; Ogden was actually one of the biggest obstacles standing between the two and a total monopoly over New York steam maritime trade. Ogden was the governor of New Jersey and found New York’s permits to be a travesty of free trade. Ogden fought the two but was ultimately forced to accept defeat. Ogden later purchased a pass from “John R

Like A Virgin

1191 words - 5 pages misinterpret the song the most. The chorus goes, “ Like a virgin, touched for the very first time, like a virgin, when your heart beats, next to mine.” The chorus makes listeners automatically think that Madonna is singing about a new sexual partner, and about the first time she has sex with a new partner. The meaning of the chorus is actually not related to sex at all. It means that the person who came into the writers life made him feel like a virgin

Similar Essays

The Texas Horned Lizard – A Highly Adapted Species For Survival In Desert Environments And Defense Against Predators

1357 words - 6 pages transporting water for drinking, which has allowed for its survival in areas with little water. Its highly effective defense mechanisms have also helped it to adapt to its large, sluggish body, so that agility and speed is not necessary for defense against predators. The horned lizard’s unique and remarkable anatomical, physiological and behavioral adaptations merit a great interest for further research and aide scientists in understanding the evolution

In John Steinbeck`s, 'of Mice And Men', It Can Be Argued That, While Lennie Causes Problems For George, He Is Better Off With Him

454 words - 2 pages In John Steinbeck`s, 'Of Mice And Men', it can be argued that, While Lennie causes problems for George, he is better off with him. Because Lennie Helps George get a job and lose it as quickly as they got it. If George didn't have Lennie he would be lonely and he also would of have a family and his own place to live. Because Lennie is big, he and George get a job quickly and because Lennie is mentally disabled, they also lose their

Texas Blues Musicians Essay

1554 words - 7 pages (Just a Little Bit Harder)” was one of the only hits off the album. (Unterberger) Janis struggled with drug addiction and alcoholism for many years. Her “anything goes” life style caught up to her in October of 1970 where she died of an overdose in a Hollywood hotel room. (Unterberger) Her posthumously album Pearl got better reviews it featured many hits including “Me and Bobby McGee” a song written for ex lover Kris Kristofferson. (Janis Joplin

Primate Behavioral Observation (San Antonio Zoo) Anthropology Research

649 words - 3 pages dominant set of parents with many offspring. Just like the tamarins monkeys, the gibbons monkeys are known for having huge, long canines. White-cheeked Gibbons are found primarily in Vietnam and Southern China. These monkeys are very, very territorial. They often walk around all day to looking for predators so that they may be ready to defend their families and land. Gibbons rarely spend time on the ground; they mostly spend time up in canopies. The