A growing body of research shows that birds and other animals change their behavior in response to human-made noise, such as the din of traffic or the hum of machinery. But human clamor doesn't just affect animals. Because many animals also pollinate plants or eat or disperse their seeds, human noise can have ripple effects on plants too, finds a new study.


In cases where noise has ripple effects on long-lived plants like trees, the consequences could last for decades, even after the source of the noise goes away, says lead author Clinton Francis of the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center in Durham, North Carolina.


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Original Citation: Francis, C.D., Kleist, N.J., Ortega, C.P., & Cruz, A. (2012). Noise pollution alters ecological services: enhanced pollination and disrupted seed dispersal; Proceedings of the Royal Society B, (March 2012) : rspb.2012.0230v1-rspb20120230.