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Multiple Sensory Modalities in Diurnal Geckos Is Associated with the Signaling Environment and Evolutionary Constraints

Kabir, MS and Venkatesan, R and Thaker, M (2020) Multiple Sensory Modalities in Diurnal Geckos Is Associated with the Signaling Environment and Evolutionary Constraints. In: Integrative Organismal Biology, 2 (1).

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1093/iob/obaa027


To be effective, animal signals need to be detectable in the environment, but their development and expression require resources. For multimodal communication, investment in elaborating traits in one modality could reduce the elaboration of traits in other modalities. In Cnemaspis geckos, chemical signals for conspecific communication predated the evolution of visual signals, allowing us to examine the potential trade-off in signal elaboration and the current habitat associations with signal use. We studied five species of Cnemaspis and quantified visual (patch size, color characteristics) and chemical (secretory composition) traits in males, as well as key environmental parameters (temperature, humidity, light) in each of their habitats. Within species, we found some trade-off in the elaboration of signals, as the strength of several components in the visual and chemical modalities were negatively associated. Strength of some signal components in each modality was also independently associated with specific environmental parameters that affect their detection (visual traits) and persistence (chemical traits). Specifically, species with larger, brighter, and more saturated color patches were found in habitats where the brightness and chroma of light were lower. Furthermore, environments with higher substrate temperature and higher relative humidity harbored species that produced secretions with a higher percentage of saturated and aromatic compounds. Thus, the elaboration of multimodal signals in this group of Cnemaspis geckos seems to increase the efficiency of communication in the signaling-environment, but the strength of signals in different modalities is constrained by trade-offs in signal expression. © 2021 Clinical Kidney Journal. All rights reserved.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Integrative Organismal Biology
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Additional Information: The copyright for this article belongs to the Author(s).
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Centre for Ecological Sciences
Date Deposited: 23 Jan 2023 07:23
Last Modified: 23 Jan 2023 07:23
URI: https://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/79255

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