Friday, 23 March 2012

Man-made noise disrupts the growth of plants and trees

It alters birdsong and can make it difficult for some predators to hunt, and now it seems that man-made noise also affects plants.
A US team found that industrial noise disrupted the behaviour of animals that pollinate plants and disperse seeds.
This, they suggest, could be slowly transforming our landscape, especially by changing the dispersal of slow-growing trees.
The team, led by Clinton Francis from the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center (NESCent) in North Carolina, tested the effects of industrial noise on wildlife in Rattlesnake Canyon Habitat Management Area (RCHMA), New Mexico.
This large forested area has a high density of natural gas wells, providing scientists with a unique setting that allowed them to study the effects of noise without some of the "confounding factors" often associated with noisy areas, such as roadways and artificial light.

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