Trumpets occurring within the context of intense social interactions such as a Greeting-Ceremony, Mating-Pandemonium, Birth, or other Bonding-Ceremony. Social-Trumpets last less than a second in duration and are typically, or possibly exclusively, produced by females of all age classes, except infants. Structurally, Social-Trumpets are not significantly different from Play-Trumpets although they are significantly different from the other Trumpet context-types.

Social-Trumpeting individuals overlap with the lower frequency Rumbling produced by other participants in a social interaction. We propose that Social-Trumpets function as a sort of exclamation mark, helping to define the level of significance of an event. While the type of Rumbling may indicate of the type of event (e.g. mating, greeting, conflict), we believe that the frequency, and perhaps even the placement, of Social-Trumpets may be an indication of the level of excitement and importance that the elephants collectively confer on an event. In a sense, the use of Social-Trumpets might be viewed as a simple form of syntax qualifying the sequence of calls. More research is clearly needed.

References: Poole 2011. (Full reference list)

This behavior occurs in the following context(s): Advertisement & Attraction, Affiliative, Birth, Coalition Building, Courtship, Protest & Distress


Context: Advertisement & Attraction (1)

Qadija has just Mated with Pascal and Queiroz (circled at the start) is leading the Mating-Pandemonium. She has already given a number of powerful Rumbles and two Roar-Rumbles. As this clip starts she Rumbles again and then walks over to where the mating occurred and gives a Rumble-Roar-Rumble. Qadija runs toward her and Queiroz gives a Social-Trumpet and Rumbles again. (Amboseli, Kenya)


Context: Advertisement & Attraction (2)

Qadija has just Mated with Pascal and a Mating-Pandemonium is on-going. As the clip starts Pascal and the estrous female have walked over to the family. Allomother Qaskazi is trying to get the matriarchs infant to Comfort-Suckle from her. There is a whimsical Social-Trumpet by someone in the group. A female in the foreground walks over to Pascal and reaches Trunk-to-Genitals to sniff his penis and gives a Social-Trumpet. and then Rumbles. (Amboseli, Kenya)