Natural noise affects conspecific signal detection and territorial defense behaviors in songbirds

Veronica Reed, Cory Toth, Ryan Wardle, Dylan Gomes, Jesse Barber & Clinton Francis
Recent research suggests that anthropogenic noise can substantially alter animal behavior. Although there are many sources of natural background noise, the relative influence of these sounds on behavior has received much less attention. Using landscape-scale playbacks of rushing rivers and crashing ocean surf, we investigated how habitat appropriate natural noise alters territorial defense behaviors in lazuli buntings (Passerina amoena) occupying riparian areas and spotted towhees (Pipilo maculatus) in riparian and coastal areas when exposed to...
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