Neurophysiology of birdsong learning

R. Mooney, J. Prather, T. Roberts

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

19 Scopus citations


Oscine songbirds use auditory feedback to learn and, in some species, to maintain their courtship songs. Song learning is restricted to a juvenile sensitive period characterized by a remarkable capacity for memorization and subsequent accurate imitation of tutor songs. The songbird’s brain contains a constellation of interconnected brain nuclei, known as the song system, which plays an important role in singing and song learning. This chapter covers our current understanding of the ecological function of song, the peripheral and central mechanisms of song production and the neural mechanisms of song learning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationLearning and Memory
Subtitle of host publicationA Comprehensive Reference
Number of pages34
ISBN (Electronic)9780123705099
StatePublished - Jan 1 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Area x
  • Auditory feedback
  • Auditory imprinting
  • Basal ganglia
  • Birdsong
  • Error correction
  • HVC
  • LMAN
  • RA
  • Sensorimotor integration
  • Song system
  • Sparse codes
  • Vocal learning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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