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Stridulation is the act of producing
sound In physics Physics is the that studies , its , its and behavior through , and the related entities of and . "Physical science is that department of knowledge which relates to the order of nature, or, in other words, to the regular ...

sound
by rubbing together certain body parts. This behavior is mostly associated with
insect Insects (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be in ...

insect
s, but other animals are known to do this as well, such as a number of species of
fish Fish are aquatic Aquatic means relating to water Water (chemical formula H2O) is an inorganic, transparent, tasteless, odorless, and nearly colorless chemical substance, which is the main constituent of Earth's hydrosphere and the ...

fish
,
snake Snakes are elongated, limbless, carnivore, carnivorous reptiles of the suborder Serpentes . Like all other Squamata, squamates, snakes are ectothermic, amniote vertebrates covered in overlapping Scale (zoology), scales. Many species of snakes ...

snake
s and
spider Spiders (order Order or ORDER or Orders may refer to: * Orderliness Orderliness is associated with other qualities such as cleanliness Cleanliness is both the abstract state of being clean and free from germs, dirt, trash, or waste, and the ...

spider
s. The mechanism is typically that of one structure with a well-defined lip, ridge, or nodules (the "scraper" or ''plectrum'') being moved across a finely-ridged surface (the "file" or ''stridulitrum''—sometimes called the ''pars stridens'') or vice versa, and vibrating as it does so, like the dragging of a
phonograph A phonograph, in its later forms also called a gramophone (as a trademark since 1887, as a generic name in the UK since 1910) or since the 1940s called a record player, is a device for the mechanical and analogue recording and reproduction ...

phonograph
needle across a
vinyl record A phonograph disc record (also known as a gramophone disc record, especially in British English British English (BrE) is the standard dialect of the English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language fi ...
. Sometimes it is the structure bearing the file which resonates to produce the sound, but in other cases it is the structure bearing the scraper, with both variants possible in related groups. Common
onomatopoeic Onomatopoeia is the process of creating a word that phonetically imitates, resembles, or suggests the sound that it describes. Such a word itself is also called an onomatopoeia. Common onomatopoeias include animal noises such as " oink", "meow ...

onomatopoeic
words for the sounds produced by stridulation include ''chirp'' and ''chirrup''.


Arthropod stridulation

Insect Insects (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be in ...

Insect
s and other
arthropod An arthropod (, (gen. ποδός)) is an invertebrate animal having an exoskeleton, a Segmentation (biology), segmented body, and paired jointed appendages. Arthropods form the phylum Euarthropoda,Reference showing that Euarthropoda is a phylum: ...
s stridulate by rubbing together two parts of the body. These are referred to generically as the ''stridulatory organs''. The mechanism is best known in
cricket Cricket is a Bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two teams of eleven players each on a cricket field, field at the centre of which is a cricket pitch, pitch with a wicket at each end, each comprising two Bail (cricket), bai ...
s,
mole cricket Mole crickets are members of the insect Family (biology), family Gryllotalpidae, in the order (biology), order Orthoptera (grasshoppers, locusts, and crickets). Mole crickets are cylindrical-bodied, fossorial insects about long as adults, with ...

mole cricket
s, and
grasshopper Grasshoppers are a group of insect Insects (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''comm ...

grasshopper
s, but other insects which stridulate include
Curculionidae The Curculionidae are the family In human society A society is a Social group, group of individuals involved in persistent Social relation, social interaction, or a large social group sharing the same spatial or social territory, t ...

Curculionidae
(weevils and bark beetles),
Cerambycidae
Cerambycidae
(longhorned beetles),
Mutillidae The Mutillidae are a family In human society, family (from la, familia) is a group of people related either by consanguinity (by recognized birth) or affinity (by marriage or other relationship). The purpose of families is to maintain t ...
("velvet ants"),
Reduviidae The Reduviidae are a large cosmopolitan family of the order Hemiptera Hemiptera (Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken i ...

Reduviidae
(assassin bugs),
Buprestidae Buprestidae is a family In human society, family (from la, familia) is a group of people related either by consanguinity (by recognized birth) or affinity (by marriage or other relationship). The purpose of families is to maintain the w ...
(metallic wood-boring beetles),
Hydrophilidae Hydrophilidae, also known colloquially as water scavenger beetles, is a family In human society, family (from la, familia) is a group of people related either by consanguinity (by recognized birth) or affinity (by marriage or other relat ...

Hydrophilidae
(water scavenger beetles),
Cicindelinae Tiger beetles are a large group of beetles, from the Cicindelinae subfamily, known for their aggressive predatory habits and running speed. The fastest known species of tiger beetle, ''Cicindela hudsoni'', can run at a speed of , or about 125 body ...
(tiger beetles),
Scarabaeidae The family Scarabaeidae, as currently defined, consists of over 30,000 species of beetle Beetles are a group of insect Insects or Insecta (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Ital ...
(scarab beetles),
Glaresidae ''Glaresis'' is a genus of beetles, sometimes called "enigmatic scarab beetles", in its own family, the Glaresidae. It is closely related to, and was formerly included in, the family Scarabaeidae. Although its members occur in arid and sandy areas ...
("enigmatic scarabs"),
larva A larva (plural larvae ) is a distinct juvenile form many animal Animals (also called Metazoa) are multicellular A multicellular organism is an organism In biology, an organism () is any organic, life, living system that f ...
l
Lucanidae Stag beetles is a family of about 1,200 species of beetle Beetles are a group of insects that form the Taxonomic rank, order Coleoptera (), in the superorder Endopterygota. Their front pair of wings are hardened into wing-cases, Elytron, el ...

Lucanidae
(stag beetles),
Passalidae Passalidae is a family In human society, family (from la, familia) is a group of people related either by consanguinity (by recognized birth) or affinity (by marriage or other relationship). The purpose of families is to maintain the wel ...
(Bessbugs),
Geotrupidae Geotrupidae (from Greek language, Greek ''geos'', earth, and ''trypetes'', borer) is a family (biology), family of beetles in the order (biology), order Coleoptera. They are commonly called earth-boring dung beetles. Most excavate burrows in wh ...
(earth-boring dung beetles), Alydidae (broad-headed bugs), Largidae (bordered plant bugs),
Miridae The Miridae are a large and diverse insect family at one time known by the taxonomic synonym The Botanical and Zoological Codes of nomenclature treat the concept of synonymy differently. In nomenclature, botanical nomenclature, a synonym is a ...

Miridae
(leaf bugs),
Corixidae Corixidae is a family of aquatic insect Insects or Insecta (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around ...
(water boatmen, notably '' Micronecta scholtzi''), various
ant Ants are eusocial Eusociality (from Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population i ...

ant
s (including the Black imported fire ant, '' Solenopsis richteri''), some
stick insects The Phasmatodea (also known as Phasmida, Phasmatoptera or Spectra) are an Order (biology), order of insects whose members are variously known as stick insects, stick-bugs, walking sticks, or bug sticks. They are generally referred to as phasmato ...

stick insects
such as '' Pterinoxylus spinulosus'', and some species of
Agromyzidae The Agromyzidae are a family commonly referred to as the leaf-miner flies, for the feeding habits of their larva A larva (plural larvae ) is a distinct juvenile form many animals undergo before metamorphosis into adults. Animals with indirec ...
(leaf-mining flies). While
cicada The cicadas () are a superfamily, the Cicadoidea, of s in the order (true bugs). They are in the suborder , along with smaller jumping bugs such as s and s. The superfamily is divided into two families, the , with two species in Australia, an ...

cicada
s are well-known for sound production via abdominal
tymbal The tymbal (or timbal) is the corrugated exoskeletal structure used to produce sounds in insects. In male cicada The cicadas () are a superfamily, the Cicadoidea, of insect Insects (from Latin ') are pancrustacean Hexapoda, hexapod inv ...
organs, it has been demonstrated that some species can produce sounds via stridulation, as well. Stridulation is also known in a few
tarantula Tarantulas comprise a group of large and often hairy spider Spiders (order Order or ORDER or Orders may refer to: * Orderliness Orderliness is associated with other qualities such as cleanliness Cleanliness is both the abstract stat ...

tarantula
s (Arachnida), and some
pill millipede Pill millipedes are any members of two living (and one extinct) Order (biology), orders of millipedes, often grouped together into a single superorder, Oniscomorpha. The name Oniscomorpha refers to the millipedes' resemblance to certain woodlouse, ...

pill millipede
s (Diplopoda, Oniscomorpha). It is also widespread among decapod crustaceans, e.g., rock lobsters. Most spiders are silent, but some tarantula species are known to stridulate. When disturbed, '' Theraphosa blondi'', the Goliath tarantula, can produce a rather loud hissing noise by rubbing together the bristles on its legs. This is said to be audible to a distance of up to 15 feet (4.5 m).Goliath Tarantula, ''Theraphosa blondi''
a
Extreme Science
. Accessed 13 March 2007.
One of the s, '' Schizocosa stridulans'', produces low-frequency sounds by flexing its abdomen (tremulation, rather than stridulation) or high-frequency stridulation by using the cymbia on the ends of its
pedipalps Pedipalps (commonly shortened to palps or palpi) are the second pair of appendages of Chelicerata, chelicerates – a group of arthropods including spiders, scorpions, horseshoe crabs, and sea spiders. The pedipalps are lateral to the chelicerae (" ...
. In most species of spiders, stridulation commonly occurs by males during sexual encounters. In the species '''', females also possess stridulatory organs, and both sexes engage in stridulation. In the species ''
Steatoda nobilis ''Steatoda nobilis'' is a spider in the genus ''Steatoda'', known in the United Kingdom as the noble false widow and is often referred to as the false widow. As the common name indicates, the spider superficially resembles and is frequently confus ...

Steatoda nobilis
,'' the males produce stridulation sounds during mating. The anatomical parts used to produce sound are quite varied: the most common system is that seen in grasshoppers and many other insects, where a hind leg scraper is rubbed against the adjacent forewing (in
beetle Beetles are a group of insect Insects (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known a ...

beetle
s and
true bug Hemiptera (Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Re ...
s the forewings are hardened); in crickets and
katydid Insects in the family (biology), family Tettigoniidae are commonly called katydids (in Australia, South Africa, Canada, and the United States), or bush crickets. They have previously been known as "long-horned grasshoppers". More than 6,400 spe ...

katydid
s a file on one wing is rubbed by a scraper on the other wing; in longhorned beetles, the back edge of the
pronotum The prothorax is the foremost of the three segments in the Thorax (insect anatomy), thorax of an insect, and bears the first pair of insect leg, legs. Its principal sclerites (exoskeletal plates) are the pronotum (Dorsum (biology), dorsal), the p ...
scrapes against a file on the
mesonotum The mesothorax is the middle of the three segments in the thorax The thorax or chest is a part of the anatomy Anatomy (Greek ''anatomē'', 'dissection') is the branch of biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and l ...
; in various other beetles, the sound is produced by moving the head—up/down or side-to-side—while in others the abdominal
tergite A ''tergum'' (Latin for "the back"; plural ''terga'', associated adjective tergal) is the dorsal Dorsal (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin w ...
s are rubbed against the
elytra An elytron (; ; ) is a modified, hardened forewing of beetles (Coleoptera), though a few of the true bugs (Hemiptera) such as the family Schizopteridae are extremely similar; in true bugs, the forewings are called hemelytra (sometimes alternati ...
; in assassin bugs, the tip of the mouthparts scrapes along a ridged groove in the
prosternum Image:Derobrachus sp bl detail.jpg, Prothorax of a coleopteran The prothorax is the foremost of the three segments in the Thorax (insect anatomy), thorax of an insect, and bears the first pair of insect leg, legs. Its principal sclerites (exoskele ...
; in velvet ants the back edge of one abdominal tergite scrapes a file on the dorsal surface of the following tergite. Stridulation in several of these examples is for attracting a mate, or as a form of territorial behaviour, but can also be a warning signal (acoustic
aposematism Aposematism is the advertising Advertising is a marketing Marketing is the process of intentionally stimulating demand for and purchases of goods and services; potentially including selection of a target audience; selection of ce ...
, as in velvet ants and tarantulas). This kind of communication was first described by Slovenian biologist
Ivan Regen Ivan (or Janez) Regen (known also as Johann Regen) (December 9, 1868 – July 27, 1947) was a Slovenes, Slovenian biologist, best known for his studies in the field of bioacoustics. Regen was born in the hamlet of Lajše in Trata, Gorenja Vas–Pol ...
(1868–1947). left, Green Katydid Grasshopper call.


Vertebrate stridulation

Some
species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification, classification and a taxonomic rank of an organism, as well as a unit of biodiversity. A species is often defined as the largest group of organisms in which any two individu ...

species
of
venomous snake Venomous snakes are Species (biology), species of the Suborder (biology), suborder Snake, Serpentes that are capable of producing Snake venom, venom, which they use for killing prey, for defense, and to assist with digestion of their prey. The v ...
s stridulate as part of a threat display. They arrange their body into a series of parallel C-shaped (counterlooped) coils that they rub together to produce a sizzling sound, rather like water on a hot plate. The best-known examples are members of the
genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is a taxonomic rank In biological classification In biology, taxonomy () is the scientific study of naming, defining (Circumscription (taxonomy), circumscribing) and classifying gr ...
''
Echis ''Echis'' (common names: saw-scaled vipers, carpet vipersSpawls S, Branch B. 1995. ''The Dangerous Snakes of Africa''. Dubai: Ralph Curtis Books. Oriental Press. 192 pp. .) is a genus Genus /ˈdʒiː.nəs/ (plural genera /ˈdʒen.ər.ə/) is ...
'' (saw-scaled vipers), although those of the genus '' Cerastes'' (North African desert vipers) and at least one bush viper species, '''', do this as well.Spawls S, Branch B. 1995. The Dangerous Snakes of Africa. Ralph Curtis Books. Dubai: Oriental Press. 192 pp. .Mallow D, Ludwig D, Nilson G. 2003. True Vipers: Natural History and Toxinology of Old World Vipers. Krieger Publishing Company, Malabar, Florida. 359 pp. . A
bird Birds are a group of warm-blooded vertebrate Vertebrates () comprise all species of animal Animals (also called Metazoa) are multicellular eukaryotic organisms that form the Kingdom (biology), biological kingdom Animalia. With ...

bird
species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification, classification and a taxonomic rank of an organism, as well as a unit of biodiversity. A species is often defined as the largest group of organisms in which any two individu ...

species
, the club-winged manakin, has a dedicated stridulation apparatus, while a species of mammal, the lowland streaked tenrec, (''Hemicentetes semispinosus'') produces a high-pitched noise by rubbing together specialised quills on its back.


References

{{reflist, 28em


External links


The British Library Sound Archive
contains over 150,000 recordings of animal sounds and natural atmospheres from around the world. Insect behavior Sound Animal sounds Articles containing video clips