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Author Kyba, C.C.M.; Ruhtz, T.; Fischer, J.; Hölker, F.
Title Cloud coverage acts as an amplifier for ecological light pollution in urban ecosystems Type Journal Article
Year 2011 Publication PloS one Abbreviated Journal PLoS One
Volume 6 Issue 3 Pages e17307
Keywords Berlin; *Cities; *Ecosystem; Environmental Pollution/*adverse effects/analysis; *Light; Seasons; *Weather
Abstract The diurnal cycle of light and dark is one of the strongest environmental factors for life on Earth. Many species in both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems use the level of ambient light to regulate their metabolism, growth, and behavior. The sky glow caused by artificial lighting from urban areas disrupts this natural cycle, and has been shown to impact the behavior of organisms, even many kilometers away from the light sources. It could be hypothesized that factors that increase the luminance of the sky amplify the degree of this “ecological light pollution”. We show that cloud coverage dramatically amplifies the sky luminance, by a factor of 10.1 for one location inside of Berlin and by a factor of 2.8 at 32 km from the city center. We also show that inside of the city overcast nights are brighter than clear rural moonlit nights, by a factor of 4.1. These results have important implications for choronobiological and chronoecological studies in urban areas, where this amplification effect has previously not been considered.
Address Institute for Space Sciences, Freie Universitat Berlin, Berlin, Germany. christopher.kyba@wew.fu-berlin.de
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ISSN 1932-6203 ISBN Medium (up)
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Notes PMID:21399694; PMCID:PMC3047560 Approved no
Call Number IDA @ john @ Serial 20
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Author Nordt, A.; Klenke, R.
Title Sleepless in town--drivers of the temporal shift in dawn song in urban European blackbirds Type Journal Article
Year 2013 Publication PloS one Abbreviated Journal PLoS One
Volume 8 Issue 8 Pages e71476
Keywords Animals; Automobiles; Cities; Ecosystem; Germany; Humans; Light; Male; Noise; Photoperiod; Sleep; Songbirds/*physiology; Urban Population; *Vocalization, Animal; dawn chorus; morning chorus
Abstract Organisms living in urban environments are exposed to different environmental conditions compared to their rural conspecifics. Especially anthropogenic noise and artificial night light are closely linked to urbanization and pose new challenges to urban species. Songbirds are particularly affected by these factors, because they rely on the spread of acoustic information and adjust their behaviour to the rhythm of night and day, e.g. time their dawn song according to changing light intensities. Our aim was to clarify the specific contributions of artificial night light and traffic noise on the timing of dawn song of urban European Blackbirds (Turdus merula). We investigated the onset of blackbird dawn song along a steep urban gradient ranging from an urban forest to the city centre of Leipzig, Germany. This gradient of anthropogenic noise and artificial night light was reflected in the timing of dawn song. In the city centre, blackbirds started their dawn song up to 5 hours earlier compared to those in semi-natural habitats. We found traffic noise to be the driving factor of the shift of dawn song into true night, although it was not completely separable from the effects of ambient night light. We additionally included meteorological conditions into the analysis and found an effect on the song onset. Cloudy and cold weather delayed the onset, but cloud cover was assumed to reflect night light emissions, thus, amplified sky luminance and increased the effect of artificial night light. Beside these temporal effects, we also found differences in the spatial autocorrelation of dawn song onset showing a much higher variability in noisy city areas than in rural parks and forests. These findings indicate that urban hazards such as ambient noise and light pollution show a manifold interference with naturally evolved cycles and have significant effects on the activity patterns of urban blackbirds.
Address Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ, Department of Conservation Biology, Leipzig, Germany. anja.nordt@ufz.de
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Notes PMID:23940759; PMCID:PMC3737108 Approved no
Call Number IDA @ john @ Serial 43
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Author Titulaer, M.; Spoelstra, K.; Lange, C.Y.M.J.G.; Visser, M.E.
Title Activity patterns during food provisioning are affected by artificial light in free living great tits (Parus major) Type Journal Article
Year 2012 Publication PloS one Abbreviated Journal PLoS One
Volume 7 Issue 5 Pages e37377
Keywords Animals; Appetitive Behavior/*physiology; Feeding Behavior/*physiology; Female; Light/*adverse effects; Male; Nesting Behavior/*physiology; Netherlands; Passeriformes/*physiology; Photoperiod; Sex Factors
Abstract Artificial light may have severe ecological consequences but there is limited experimental work to assess these consequences. We carried out an experimental study on a wild population of great tits (Parus major) to assess the impact of light pollution on daily activity patterns during the chick provisioning period. Pairs that were provided with a small light outside their nest box did not alter the onset, cessation or duration of their working day. There was however a clear effect of artificial light on the feeding rate in the second half of the nestling period: when provided with artificial light females increased their feeding rate when the nestlings were between 9 and 16 days old. Artificial light is hypothesised to have affected the perceived photoperiod of either the parents or the offspring which in turn led to increased parental care. This may have negative fitness consequences for the parents, and light pollution may thus create an ecological trap for breeding birds.
Address Department of Animal Ecology, Netherlands Institute of Ecology, Wageningen, The Netherlands
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Notes PMID:22624023; PMCID:PMC3356403 Approved no
Call Number IDA @ john @ Serial 45
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Author Dominoni, D.M.; Quetting, M.; Partecke, J.
Title Long-term effects of chronic light pollution on seasonal functions of European blackbirds (Turdus merula) Type Journal Article
Year 2013 Publication PloS one Abbreviated Journal PLoS One
Volume 8 Issue 12 Pages e85069
Keywords Turdus merula; European blackbird; birds; animals; Reproduction
Abstract Light pollution is known to affect important biological functions of wild animals, including daily and annual cycles. However, knowledge about long-term effects of chronic exposure to artificial light at night is still very limited. Here we present data on reproductive physiology, molt and locomotor activity during two-year cycles of European blackbirds (Turdus merula) exposed to either dark nights or 0.3 lux at night. As expected, control birds kept under dark nights exhibited two regular testicular and testosterone cycles during the two-year experiment. Control urban birds developed testes faster than their control rural conspecifics. Conversely, while in the first year blackbirds exposed to light at night showed a normal but earlier gonadal cycle compared to control birds, during the second year the reproductive system did not develop at all: both testicular size and testosterone concentration were at baseline levels in all birds. In addition, molt sequence in light-treated birds was more irregular than in control birds in both years. Analysis of locomotor activity showed that birds were still synchronized to the underlying light-dark cycle. We suggest that the lack of reproductive activity and irregular molt progression were possibly the results of i) birds being stuck in a photorefractory state and/or ii) chronic stress. Our data show that chronic low intensities of light at night can dramatically affect the reproductive system. Future studies are needed in order to investigate if and how urban animals avoid such negative impact and to elucidate the physiological mechanisms behind these profound long-term effects of artificial light at night. Finally we call for collaboration between scientists and policy makers to limit the impact of light pollution on animals and ecosystems.
Address Department of Migration and Immuno-ecology, Max Planck Institute for Ornithology, Radolfzell, Germany ; Department of Biology, University of Konstanz, Konstanz, Germany
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Notes PMID:24376865; PMCID:PMC3869906 Approved no
Call Number IDA @ john @ Serial 49
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Author Rockhill, A.P.; DePerno, C.S.; Powell, R.A.
Title The effect of illumination and time of day on movements of bobcats (Lynx rufus) Type Journal Article
Year 2013 Publication PloS one Abbreviated Journal PLoS One
Volume 8 Issue 7 Pages e69213
Keywords Animals; Female; *Lighting; Lynx/*physiology; Male; Moon; Movement/*physiology; North Carolina; Time Factors; Wetlands
Abstract Understanding behavioral changes of prey and predators based on lunar illumination provides insight into important life history, behavioral ecology, and survival information. The objectives of this research were to determine if bobcat movement rates differed by period of day (dark, moon, crepuscular, day), lunar illumination (<10%, 10 – <50%, 50 – <90%, >90%), and moon phase (new, full). Bobcats had high movement rates during crepuscular and day periods and low movement rates during dark periods with highest nighttime rates at 10-<50% lunar illumination. Bobcats had highest movement rates during daytime when nighttime illumination was low (new moon) and higher movement rates during nighttime when lunar illumination was high (full moon). The behaviors we observed are consistent with prey availability being affected by light level and by limited vision by bobcats during darkness.
Address Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA. aimee_rockhill@ncsu.edu
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Notes PMID:23861963; PMCID:PMC3704646 Approved no
Call Number IDA @ john @ Serial 84
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