Look who’s talking now, but be careful

So far, none of the Open Access Files of the Day had sound, not even the two videos amongst them. This fits into the wider picture of multimedia being neglected in the scientific corners of Wikimedia projects, or in terms of reuse (or even use) of Open Access materials.

Fortunately, supplementary files from Open Access sources are bound to become more visible on Wikimedia Commons over the next few months, and as a kind of sneak preview, let’s take a look at the abstract of the article Versatile Aggressive Mimicry of Cicadas by an Australian Predatory Katydid, published in 2009 by David C. Marshall and Kathy B. R. Hill in PLoS ONE (and thus under CC BY):

We have found that predatory Chlorobalius leucoviridis katydids (Orthoptera: Tettigoniidae) can attract male cicadas (Hemiptera: Cicadidae) by imitating the species-specific wing-flick replies of sexually receptive female cicadas. This aggressive mimicry is accomplished both acoustically, with tegminal clicks, and visually, with synchronized body jerks. Remarkably, the katydids respond effectively to a variety of complex, species-specific Cicadettini songs, including songs of many cicada species that the predator has never encountered.  

For those unfamiliar with that species (like me), Fig. 1 provides an image:

The sounds that are at the core of the article, however, are relegated to the supplementary materials, with visual representations thereof included in Fig. 5 and in part H of the composite Fig. 6. What if they were included in the paper, just as the images and Google map in this demo of article visualization?

Both audio files and the image displayed above have since found a new home on Wikimedia Commons as Chlorobalius leucoviridis mimicry1.ogg, Chlorobalius leucoviridis mimicry2.ogg and Male Chlorobalius leucoviridis.jpg, respectively, and are reused, e.g., on the English and simple Wikipedias.

Audio S2 (Chlorobalius leucoviridis mimicry2.ogg; please click through to listen) is today’s Open Access File of the Day. It illustrates how the song of the male of the prey species is interspersed with clicks by the predator that imitates females of the prey species.

ResearchBlogging.orgMarshall, D., & Hill, K. (2009). Versatile Aggressive Mimicry of Cicadas by an Australian Predatory Katydid PLoS ONE, 4 (1) DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0004185

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