Entrainment of the circadian system of the house sparrow: A population of oscillators in pinealectomized birds

Joseph S. Takahashi, Michael Menaker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

Removal of the pineal gland modifies the entrainment behavior of house sparrows. Abnormal entrainment occurs in pinealectomized sparrows exposed to 'skeleton' photoperiods (light cycles composed of 2 pulses of light per 24-h cycle). This abnormal entrainment depends upon the state of the locomotor activity (rhythmic or arrhythmic) before exposure to the light cycle, and upon the interval between the 2 pulses of light which constitute the skeleton photoperiod. The conditions that produce abnormal entrainment in pinealectomized birds are strongly correlated with those that produce 2 stable phases of entrainment to skeleton photoperiods in normal birds ('bistability phenomenon'). These results suggest that after pinealectomy, there remains a population of oscillators whose combined output is reflected in the locomotor activity of individual sparrows.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)245-253
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Comparative Physiology □ A
Volume146
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 1982

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Physiology
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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