Friday, November 11, 2011

Traffic noise vs. bird reproduction success

Among the numerous ways that humans influence the lives of animals and the livelihood of the environment, traffic noise ranks relatively low on the growing list of human interactions that are detrimental to animals. However, this is just the case in suitable habitats for avian species along a dutch motorway. The acoustic signals used by birds in mating rituals and other territorial disputes become masked by the excessive traffic noise. Findings of the study included females laying smaller clutches in
noisier areas, along with a large variation in noise along the motorway between different months as well as the time of day. Different cost-effective mitigation measures such as traffic speed reduction or closing of roads
during the breeding season were suggested by the authors to help curb what could be a future problem for these birds and their reproductive success.


Title: Negative impact of traffic noise on avian reproductive success
Authors: Wouter Halfwerk, Leonard J. M. Holleman, C(Kate). M. Lessells, Hans Slabbekoorn
Source: Journal of Applied Ecology

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