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International Journal of Zoology
Volume 2012, Article ID 602401, 10 pages
Research Article

Acoustic Repertoire of the Philippine Tarsier (Tarsius syrichta fraterculus) and Individual Variation of Long-Distance Calls

1Decin Zoo, Pastýřská Stěna, Žižkova 15, 405 02 Děčín, Czech Republic
2Department of Zoology, Faculty of Science, Charles University in Prague, Viničná 7, 128 44 Praha, Czech Republic
3Tarsius, o. s., NGO, Na Pěšině 267, 405 05 Děčín, Czech Republic
4Institute of Animal Science, Department of Ethology, Přátelství 815, 104 00 Praha Uhříněves, Czech Republic
5Department of Forest Protection and Game Management, Faculty of Forestry and Wood Sciences, Czech University of Life Sciences Prague, Kamýcká 129, 165 21 Praha 6, Czech Republic
6Slezská 43, 130 00 Praha 3, Czech Republic

Received 9 March 2012; Revised 28 April 2012; Accepted 29 April 2012

Academic Editor: Randy J. Nelson

Copyright © 2012 Milada Řeháková-Petrů et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We present the spectrographic description of the vocal repertoire of the Philippine tarsier (Tarsius syrichta fraterculus), a solitary living nocturnal primate for which a very limited information about acoustic communication exists to date. The majority of vocalizations were performed around sunset and, less frequently, at sunrise. We identified eight call types. Five calls recorded during communication between adults included three long-distance calls—loud call, smack-whistle, and whistle—then a soft locust-like chirp and a bird-like trill. Two other calls—cheep and twitter—were recorded during mother-infant communication. One distress call was emitted by adults during handling. All calls were performed in the 9752 Hz to more than 22 kHz frequency range. This study provides the first evidence of individual variation in the long-distance calls performed by tarsiers. Moreover, our study provides a basis for future comparison within as well as between tarsier species taxonomy. Bioacoustic methods can be used in monitoring of these cryptic species and determining their distribution range. Thus, bioacoustic studies can help to improve conservation strategies of different population/species.