Acoustic signals are an important part in the behaviour of many species and may play a key role in speciation. However, little is known about the importance of natural selection on the evolution of such signals. Acoustics signals are the main communication channel for most anuran species, and background noise from streams is a constant source of masking interference for species reproducing in these environments. Herein, we test if the noise of flowing water habitats has favoured advertisement calls with higher dominant frequencies in frogs. Phylogenetic generalized least square model analysis revealed a significant influence of reproductive environment and body size on dominant frequency, with no significant interaction between habitat and body size. While stream breeders call at higher dominant frequencies, this acoustic parameter is inversely correlated with body size in both environments. We discuss the biological consequences of long-term adaptive shift in this acoustic parameter and possible trade-offs with other evolutionary forces.
Röhr, D. L., Paterno, G. B., Camurugi, F., Juncá, F. A., & Garda, A. A. (2016). Background noise as a selective pressure: stream-breeding anurans call at higher frequencies. Organisms Diversity and Evolution, 16(1), 269–273. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13127-015-0256-0