The Evolution of Enhanced Cichlid Hearing: Functional Morphology and the Role of Ecoacoustical Factors

By Schulz-Mirbach, Tanja & F. Ladich

The Behavior, Ecology and Evolution of Cichlid Fishes. Abate, M.E., Noakes, D.L.G. (Editors.), pp. 503-539 20-Sep-2021. DOI: 10.1007/978-94-024-2080-7_14


" In teleost fishes, the evolution of hearing enhancement and corresponding auditory structures remains largely elusive. We know little about the selective pressures acting on the evolution of improved hearing. Cichlids are marked by great species diversity; they have adapted to a variety of ecological niches, including different ecoacoustical conditions such as ambient noise levels or frequency spectra. This makes cichlids a perfect model for comparative approaches to investigate the relationship between ecological factors, acoustical behavior, and functional morphology of hearing in teleost fishes and to approach questions about the evolution of improved hearing. Functional acoustical studies show that cichlids evolved a considerable diversity in ancillary auditory structures and hearing abilities. This review summarizes what is known about the morphology of inner ears and swimbladders in cichlids and about their auditory abilities. The focus is on recent comparative studies designed to shed light on the functional morphology of hearing. These studies, however, still widely lack ecological and phylogenetic perspectives. We therefore suggest that future acoustical studies in cichlids should be embedded in a phylogenetic framework including ecological data. This would help gain insight into how hearing enhancement and auditory structures evolved in this group and potentially in other teleosts as well "

Classification: Physiology and diseases.

Language: English

Schulz-Mirbach, Tanja & F. Ladich. 2021. "The Evolution of Enhanced Cichlid Hearing: Functional Morphology and the Role of Ecoacoustical Factors". The Behavior, Ecology and Evolution of Cichlid Fishes. Abate, M.E., Noakes, D.L.G. (Editors.). pp. 503-539. DOI: 10.1007/978-94-024-2080-7_14 (crc11698) (abstract)