Talk Title: Effects of light pollution on the ecology & evolution of tits
Dr Arnaud Da Silva
Date: Wednesday, 11.01.2017, 13:00, Cent Lecture Theatre 1130
(formerly Max Planck Institute Seewiesen, currently Wild Urban Evolution & Ecology Lab, CeNT University of Warsaw)
Artificial light is currently the fastest growing form of environmental pollution. Nowadays half of the European Union population cannot see the Milky Way with the naked eye. Light pollution particularly affects birds because most species use natural light cues to orientate during migration or to time activities. In cities, some species of passerines such as the great tit Parus major are altering the natural start of dawn singing and are sometimes singing into the night. Dawn song has important sexual and territorial functions, so such shifts may impact fitness. During my talk, I will show the results of a 4-year PhD study during which I used several field observations and experiments to investigate whether light pollution was responsible for the earlier singing observed in cities and the evolutionary mechanisms behind this shift.