CV : View
Lab Webpage – https://www.skyisland.in/chiti.html
Just like human languages have different regional dialects, birds also exhibit dialects in their songs. I am interested in understanding the persistence of cultural dialects in birdsong across a landscape gradient and looking at the functional role of complexity in birdsong. To address these queries, I will study the vocalizations of the White-bellied sholakili, a bird with a highly complex vocal repertoire which is endemic to the montane cloud forests of the Shola Sky Island in the Western Ghats. These birds are range-restricted in their habitat and are found only 1500m above sea level on these mountain tops, making these isolated populations an ideal study system.
At a population level, variation in cultural dialects of songs across populations can lead to behavioural cues that may ultimately result in reproductive isolation in the long term. Thus, mapping the spatial extent of cultural dialects and linking them to genetic connectivity will help in understanding evolutionary transmitted traits. In this species, individuals have varying song complexity within a population. Complexity is considered an honest indicator of fitness and one would expect a positive association between increasing song complexity and individual fitness. My work will involve collecting focal acoustic data from identifiable individuals as well as genetic data collection to assess gene flow in this species across its distribution.
This study will integrate aspects of behavioural ecology, evolutionary biology and bioacoustics.
Dr VV Robin’s research interests broadly cover patterns and processes in ecology, behavioural ecology, biogeography and evolutionary ecology. He hopes that his research contributes to conservation initiatives. He is interested in conservation initiatives involving multiple stakeholders and also in collaborative research initiatives.
- Advanced Ecology – BIO627
- Animal Physiology – BIO624
- Communicating Biology – BIO825
- Evolution – BIO613
- Forensic Science – CHM615
- Introductory Biology III: Ecology and Evolution – BIO211
- Introductory Biology II: Genetics and Molecular Biology – BIO121
- Arvind C., Joshi, V., Charif, R., Jeganathan, P., & Robin, V. (2022). Species detection framework using automated recording units: A case study of the Critically Endangered Jerdon’s courser. Oryx, 1-8. doi:10.1017/S0030605321000995
- Sawant, S., Arvind C., Joshi, V., & Robin, V. V. (2021). Spectrogram cross‐correlation can be used to measure the complexity of bird vocalizations. Methods in Ecology and Evolution, 13(2), 459-472.https://doi.org/10.1111/2041-210X.13765
- Sarangi M, Ganguly P, Zenia, Arvind C, Lakshman A, Vidya TNC. 2014. Common Myna roosts are not recruitment centers. PloS One 9: e103406. http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0103406