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Crickets and bushcrickets typically communicate and find mates with males producing loud acoustic advertisement songs towards which females move in a phenomenon called phonotaxis. Males of the pseudophylline bushcricket species Onomarchus uninotatus produce an unusually low-pitched call, to which the female's immediate response was a bodily vibration, or tremulation. We hypothesized that these tremulations might also constitute a vibratory communication signal which might be measurable on the substrate on which the female stands, which in turn males could use to find the female. We quantified these vibrational signals using a laser vibrometer and found that they were temporally nonrandom, falling within a specific time range of the interval between subsequent chirps of the male acoustic call. This system therefore constitutes a novel multimodal duet. We also found that males could track and find the source of vibration, whether a live female or a simulated vibratory signal - but only if both the acoustic and vibratory components of the duet were played back. This is the first example of a multimodal duet among animals.
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