The effect of artificial night light on the abundance of nocturnal birds

Weaving, Marian and Cooke, Raylene 2010, The effect of artificial night light on the abundance of nocturnal birds, Victorian naturalist, vol. 127, no. 5, pp. 192-195.

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Title The effect of artificial night light on the abundance of nocturnal birds
Author(s) Weaving, Marian
Cooke, RayleneORCID iD for Cooke, Raylene
Journal name Victorian naturalist
Volume number 127
Issue number 5
Start page 192
End page 195
Total pages 4
Publisher Field Naturalists Club of Victoria
Place of publication Blackburn, Vic.
Publication date 2010-10
ISSN 0042-5184
Keyword(s) Southern Boobook
Tawny Frogmouth
Summary Urbanisation is increasing rapidly, impacting on a broad range of species. The proliferation of electric light has transformed the night time environment; however, our understanding on the effects of artificial night lighting on fauna, including nocturnal birds, is extremely limited. The aim ofthis research was to determine whether artificial night light affected the abundance of nocturnal birds. Spotlighting surveys were undertaken in Research Park, Melbourne, Victoria, along three 300 m transects. Each transect was surveyed five times during three light treatments: when lights were on, 20 minutes after lights were turned off and when lights were absent, over a period often nights. A total of 123 nocturnal birds was detected during survey nights. Two species were recorded - the Southern Boobook Ninox novaeseelandiae and the Tawny Frogmouth Podargus strigoides. The Tawny Frogmouth was detected along all three transects (n=121); however, the Southern Boobook was detected along one transect only (n=2). None of the light treatments had a significant effect on bird abundance. Neither did location, habitat or the combined effects of light treatments, location and habitat. The results of this research will contribute to a growing body of knowledge and support future conservation activities for species in areas undergoing urbanisation. {The Victorian Naturalist 127 (5) 2010, 192-195).
Language eng
Field of Research 050211 Wildlife and Habitat Management
Socio Economic Objective 960812 Urban and Industrial Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
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