Shallow-water propagation of the toadfish mating call

Comp Biochem Physiol A Comp Physiol. 1983;76(2):225-31. doi: 10.1016/0300-9629(83)90319-5.


A mismatch between sound production and hearing in the oyster toadfish, Opsanus tau L., suggests the hypothesis that toadfish communicate over short distances. Low frequency acoustic signals (tones, noise and toadfish courtship calls) broadcast in 1 m deep water, attenuated rapidly, thereby restricting communication within a range of only several meters. Ambient noise does not appear to exert a strong selection pressure on the frequency spectrum of the boatwhistle or on the distance over which it is audible.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animal Communication
  • Animals
  • Fishes / physiology*
  • Hearing / physiology*
  • Sexual Behavior, Animal / physiology
  • Vocalization, Animal / physiology*