Dataset Information


Barn owls have ageless ears.

ABSTRACT: We measured the auditory sensitivity of the barn owl (Tyto alba), using a behavioural Go/NoGo paradigm in two different age groups, one younger than 2 years (n = 4) and another more than 13 years of age (n = 3). In addition, we obtained thresholds from one individual aged 23 years, three times during its lifetime. For computing audiograms, we presented test frequencies of between 0.5 and 12 kHz, covering the hearing range of the barn owl. Average thresholds in quiet were below 0 dB sound pressure level (SPL) for frequencies between 1 and 10 kHz. The lowest mean threshold was -12.6 dB SPL at 8 kHz. Thresholds were the highest at 12 kHz, with a mean of 31.7 dB SPL. Test frequency had a significant effect on auditory threshold but age group had no significant effect. There was no significant interaction between age group and test frequency. Repeated threshold estimates over 21 years from a single individual showed only a slight increase in thresholds. We discuss the auditory sensitivity of barn owls with respect to other species and suggest that birds, which generally show a remarkable capacity for regeneration of hair cells in the basilar papilla, are naturally protected from presbycusis.


PROVIDER: S-EPMC5627212 | BioStudies | 2017-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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