Binaural disparity cues available to the barn owl for sound localization

J Comp Physiol A. 1989 Feb;164(5):629-36. doi: 10.1007/BF00614505.


1. Bilateral recording of cochlear potentials was used to measure the variations in interaural time differences (ITDs) and interaural intensity differences (IIDs) as a free-field auditory stimulus was moved to different positions around a barn owl's head. 2. ITD varied smoothly with stimulus azimuth across a broad frequency range. 3. ITD varied minimally with stimulus elevation, except at extreme angles from the horizontal. 4. IID varied with both stimulus elevation and stimulus azimuth. Lower frequencies were more sensitive to variations in azimuth, whereas higher frequencies were more sensitive to variations in elevation. 5. The loci of spatial coordinates that form iso-IID contours and iso-ITD contours form a non-orthogonal grid that relates binaural disparity cues to sound location.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Acoustic Stimulation
  • Action Potentials
  • Animals
  • Auditory Perception / physiology*
  • Birds / physiology*
  • Cochlea / physiology*
  • Sound Localization / physiology*