Super-Sensing Bats and the Frogs They Hunt

The Trachops cirrhosus bat hunts túngara frogs by echolocating them based on the ripples in water produced by the frogs’ mating songs. In defense, the frogs have been observed to go silent when they know predators are around. Nat Geo reports on a further twist: The frogs can make use of audio camouflage:

 Researchers found that when a frog’s puddle was littered with debris or vegetation, like leaves, it made them much more difficult for frog-eating bats to detect.

That’s because the debris acts as “echo-acoustic clutter” and breaks up the ripples that the túngara frog’s song would otherwise generate.


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