This paper aims to study the structure and pattern of dawn song in a tropical avian species, the Pied Bush Chat (Saxicola caprata) in Haridwar (290 55’ N, 780 08’ E; Uttarakhand, India) in 2009. Males delivered complex dawn chorus on daily basis during only breeding season (February to July). The dawn song bout was made up of a number of distinct sections called song types. Each song type consisted of a series of similar or dissimilar units referred to as elements. Song type length averaged 1.43±0.23 sec and did not differ significantly among males. The
average number and types of elements in a song type were observed 8.15±1.64 and 8.01±1.56, respectively.In more than 80% of observations, song types were delivered with immediate variety and males did not follow any definite sequential pattern of song delivery. Males sang continuously for about 30 min at high rates during dawn. Males performed continuous dawn singing throughout the breeding season and seemed to interact vocally through counter-singing for extended period. Observations suggest that dawn song delivery in Pied Bush Chat plays an important role in maintenance and adjustment of social relationship among neighbouring males.
Dawn song, Pied Bush Chat, Saxicola caprata, Song characteristics, Song rate
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