Artificial night lights and seabirds: solutions to.. (ECOLIGHTSFORSEABIRDS)
Artificial night lights and seabirds: solutions to a fatal attraction
Start date: Jan 1, 2014,
End date: Dec 31, 2016
"During the last decades, artificial lighting have been increasing at a rate of 6% the World, increasing the light pollution levels. Currently, lighting constitutes the 16% of global electricity. The European Ecodesign Directive established a framework to phase out particularly energy-intensive lights. Until now, economic and energetic optimization has solely driven eco-friendly lighting strategies. Policy objectives should not only target economic optimisation, but also consider the cultural, social, energetic and ecological impacts of lighting technological innovations. On archipelagos worldwide, high numbers of fledglings of different seabird species are attracted to artificial lights during their first flights to the sea. This attraction causes mortality as grounded birds are vulnerable to starvation, predation, dehydration and collision with vehicles. To avoid/reduce light induced mortality, rescue campaigns are carried out in many places, and although only a few have been documented, the current information on seabird attraction to artificial lights mainly comes from these campaigns. Here, we aim to understand the mechanisms responsible of fatal attraction in order to design more eco-friendly artificial lights and more efficient rescue campaigns. We propose several innovative experiments and observational studies which are in the cutting edge of knowledge in the emerging field of the ecological consequences of light pollution. Our results will help to reduce light-induced mortality in one of the most endangered bird Order, Procellariiformes, as well as to understand the effect of light pollution on some evolutionary traits."
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