Is the noise I'm hearing at night that sounds like a lion purring actually a lion purring?
I yield to the greater information, thanks. I have read many times that the bigger cats don't purr, but I guess that is dated info. I have heard cheetah and cougars purr in person, but never had the chance to hang out with lions. I've had housecats for over 50 years and they are indeed full of dif. sounds, and each cat has it's own repetory. Thanks again for the update.
Thank you Wildlife Campus.
Granny, there may be flaws in any research. It wasn't until recently (say ten years) that two distinct kinds of purring were identified in housecats, one being a sound that comes from the throat/vocal chords and the other coming from the belly and related to breathing.
Among my housecats, each seems to have a different vocal range, some cannot meow and almost seem to have laryngitis except they certainly can make lots of other sounds similar to those described by the article Wildlife quotes, chirping, grunting, growling (not a bellow of a growl, not a roar, but, definitely growling). Some of them almost sound human when they vocalize, almost shaping words. And interestingly, having had several cats from neonatal and still alive at twenty-one years of life, having changing vocalizing capabilities over the years--very vocal meowing, chirping and then becoming mute at around two years old and then become very vocal again in their twenties.
Vocal Communication in the Felidae (Cat family) is very varied, with a wide range of different calls represented. These range the cheetah's birdlike contact chirp to other monosyllabic short sounds include panting, inspiratory gasp (leopard only), expiratory bursts, "knocking," and guttural hissing.
Examples of variable, longer calls are yowling, meowing, roaring, cooing, snorting, rumbling, growling, grunting, gargling, snarling, and purring. Mothers use a special call to summon kittens when bringing home live prey. Call intensity is clearly different when the prey is small and harmless (mouse) or large and potentially dangerous (rat), and the young respond accordingly.
Most small cats lack distance calls comparable to the roars of Panthera species, although some Felis females announce the onset of oestrus with loud calls, and males of seasonal-breeding species may call more often then or utter special mating calls.
With specific reference to Vocal Communication in Lions, the following vocalisations are described: Roaring, grunting, moaning, growling, snarling, hissing, spitting, meowing, puffing, humming, woofing and yes - purring. With such a variety of described sounds, purring is certainly purring as generaslly understood.
This information is derived from our Behvaiour Guide to African Carnivores Course - you can try the Component on Cheetah from the LEARNING LINK on the main AfriCam homepage.
Well, all I can say is that I believe the research. The last paragraph here is briefly explanatory. It depends I guess on how you define purring. True purring is heard both on breathing in and breathing out.
My small housecats can indeed growl and even roar to a certain degree, and, I believe big cats can certainly purr, and do, especially while consuming still alive prey. In some of my reading, that was described as a soothing reflex, the purr soothing the dying prey, or, one cat soothing another.
Pardon me for jumping in, but I've read extensively about cats for many years. It's my understanding that the big cats do not have the proper anatomical structure in their mouths/throats to purr. They are equipped to roar, which the smaller cats cannot do. The big cats in this case are lion, tiger, and leopard. The cheetah and American cougar are considered the largest of the small cats, and they do purr. The cougar also can scream, but neither can roar. Hope this isn't TMI, lol.
I *think* this has been answered tonight when I asked about a chomping sound I was hearing and it was said that there is a sound artifact that happens in our speakers when two of the high pitched sounds collide and conflict (like the cricket and something else, maybe a toad or frog).
It very much resembles a deep purr, a sound I'm familiar with when one of my large cats here is near my head and purring, drooling.