Noise Pollution from Highways Could Be Destroying Habitats

Songbirds are subject to numerous environmental issues as a result of highway noise pollution, according to one study.

Songbirds are subject to numerous environmental issues as a result of highway noise pollution, according to one study.

Noise Pollution Could Be An Environmental Health Risk to Songbirds

study released from Stanford University has found that nearby roadways could be destroying natural wildlife habitats. The study suggests that wild animal population densities are growing smaller and smaller near actual highways. The study attempted to recreate these conditions by implementing a ‘phantom road’ in a nearby ‘roadless’ natural habitat by filling it with acoustic recordings of noise traffic from other highway sources. The study was carried out over the course of Autumn bird migration. The birds that remained in the area to forage were affected physically, with decreased body conditions for flying and upset ‘stopover efficiency’. Essentially, the birds who chose to remain in the area of the artificial highway and withstood the noise experienced issues which forced them to have an extended ‘layover’, depicting signs that ambient road noise could be disruptive to their ability to find food and communicate with one another.  For songbirds, this could be deadly.

The study also perceives that songbirds subjected to these sounds were likely to be at higher risk of attack from other predators.

The study concludes, “For wildlife that remains in loud areas, noise pollution represents an invisible source of habitat degradation.”

What are your thoughts on the effects of human-generated noise on bird migration? What might improve the function of our transportation systems to decrease highway noise from traffic?

Join us in the discussion! Comment, Share on Facebook or Join us on Twitter, hashtag, #DMTalk. 

Staff Writer

Leo Ashcraft

A retired broadcast engineer, talk show host, news reporter - I have done everything there is to do in the radio broadcast business. I worked a year in television. I left that as my true passion has always been radio - plus I got tired of hearing - you have a face for radio.. I hope you enjoy my articles! Be sure to share them excessively on facebook - like our page and bug your friends with invites!

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