We would like to share with you two methods and software tools we developed: Sound Analysis Tools for Matlab, and a system, which we call ‘Bird-puffer’, for rapid auditory discrimination training of zebra finches using social reinforcement.
Sound Analysis Tools for Matlab (SAT) is similar to Sound Analysis Pro, but is modular and easy to manipulate and combine with your own code. It should be useful even without any coding: the user interface is similar to that of SAP, and it can be used for exploring sounds, extracting features, and calculating similarity. Through Matlab, these tools are now available for both Mac and PC users.
Bird-puffer is a combined software/hardware solution to rapidly train zebra finches to discriminate between songs. It can be used to train naïve birds within 3 hourly sessions, while experienced birds can lean to discriminate between songs within several minutes. Zebra finches love to socialize and they never seem to get enough of it. The system includes two cages with a little window for socializing. By choosing to socialize next to the window, the bird will voluntarily risk receiving an air-puff (harmless but unpleasant), which our software associates with specific sounds. Birds quickly learn to escape the air puff by flying away after hearing those sounds. Click here for downloading the software (for Windows only) and for hardware installation instructions. Kirill Tokarev (who co-developed this system) and I will be happy to answer questions.
We hope you will find these useful,
Happy New Year!
Kirill & Ofer