Noise and Light Can 'Profoundly' Alter Bird Reproduction, Cal Poly Study Finds


Looking for a bird’s-eye view of human impact?

Looking for a bird’s-eye view of human impact?

A new Cal Poly study published in the journal Nature provides the most comprehensive picture yet of how human noise and light pollution affect birds throughout North America, including how these factors may interact with or mask the impacts of climate change.

Recent troubling findings suggest bird populations have declined by more than 30% in the last few decades. To develop effective strategies to reverse this trend, scientists and land managers need to understand what caused the decline.

The effects of noise and light pollution on the health of bird populations had been largely overlooked until some recent studies suggested that these stressors can harm individual species. With this new study, a continent-wide picture has emerged.

Read more at California Polytechnic State University

Image: The northern cardinal has a relatively low frequency song and delayed breeding in response to noise pollution. (Credit: David Keeling)