Sea Lions Can Keep a Beat: Implications for a Comparative Understanding of Rhythm

Saturday, 15 February 2014
Columbus AB (Hyatt Regency Chicago)
Peter Cook , University of California, Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA
We've shown that a vocally stereotypic animal, a California sea lion, can move in time to a wide range of rhythmic auditory stimuli, up to and including music. Along with other recent findings, this suggests that the neural mechanisms underpinning flexible beat keeping may be much more widely distributed across the animal kingdom than previously thought. Our findings will be discussed from a broadly comparative evolutionary perspective.