Sound pressure and particle acceleration audiograms in three marine fish species from the Adriatic Sea

J Acoust Soc Am. 2009 Oct;126(4):2100-7. doi: 10.1121/1.3203562.


Fishes show great variability in hearing sensitivity, bandwidth, and the appropriate stimulus component for the inner ear (particle motion or pressure). Here, hearing sensitivities in three vocal marine species belonging to different families were described in terms of sound pressure and particle acceleration. In particular, hearing sensitivity to tone bursts of varying frequencies were measured in the red-mouthed goby Gobius cruentatus, the Mediterranean damselfish Chromis chromis, and the brown meagre Sciaena umbra using the non-invasive auditory evoked potential-recording technique. Hearing thresholds were measured in terms of sound pressure level and particle acceleration level in the three Cartesian directions using a newly developed miniature pressure-acceleration sensor. The brown meagre showed the broadest hearing range (up to 3000 Hz) and the best hearing sensitivity, both in terms of sound pressure and particle acceleration. The red-mouthed goby and the damselfish were less sensitive, with upper frequency limits of 700 and 600 Hz, respectively. The low auditory thresholds and the large hearing bandwidth of S. umbra indicate that sound pressure may play a role in S. umbra's hearing, even though pronounced connections between the swim bladder and the inner ears are lacking.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acoustic Stimulation
  • Air Sacs / physiology
  • Animals
  • Auditory Threshold / physiology*
  • Ear, Inner / physiology
  • Evoked Potentials, Auditory*
  • Hearing / physiology*
  • Hearing Tests
  • Oceans and Seas
  • Perciformes / physiology*
  • Pressure*
  • Sound*
  • Species Specificity