Degree Name

MS (Master of Science)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Richard Carter

Committee Members

Scott Pedersen, Peter Newman, Thomas Jones, Steven Wallace


The hyoid apparatus in laryngeally echolocating bats forms a mechanical connection between the larynx and auditory bullae and has been hypothesized to transfer the outgoing echolocation call to the middle ear during echolocation call emission. We used µCT data to build models of the hyoid apparatus and middle ear from six species of bats and used finite element modeling (FEM) to measure the vibroacoustic response of the tympanic membrane due to hyoid-borne sound generated during echolocation. We found that hyoid-borne sound in all six species stimulated the eardrum within a range likely heard by bats. Although there were minor differences at frequencies above 60kHz, there were no obvious morphological explanations to account for it. This suggests that variation in the morphology of the hyoid apparatus in laryngeally echolocating bats is likely driven by other functions associated with the hyoid.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.