Mongolian gerbils were trained to respond to pure tones in a shock‐avoidance task. The animals proved to be readily trainable and behaviorally stable. Thresholds were obtained by a method of limits and, in the case of one animal, by generating psychrometric functions. The gerbil responds to frequencies between 0.1 and 60.0 kHz. For pure tones between 1.0 and 16.0 kHz, the threshold of hearing averages 4.6 dB SPL. Between 1.0 and 0.1 kHz, sensitivity declines at a rate of 12 dB/octave. Between 16.0 and 40.0 kHz, threshold increases at a rate of 13 dB/octave, and above 40.0 kHz at a rate of 66 dB/octave. Thresholds derived from psychometric functions were essentially identical to those obtained by the method of limits. Hearing in this species is consistent with its size and anatomical characteristics.
Subject Classification: 80.50; 65.50.