Consequences of Urban Sprawl

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Since the development of cities, urban sprawl has reached unprecedented levels and is expected to continue to increase at an alarming rate. Urban areas are highly modified environments that undergo significant structural changes (fragmentation, degradation and loss of habitat), increased disturbance (noise, light pollution, human activities) and amplified pollution (gases, fine particles, heavy metals. Thus, urban life imposes difficult and restrictive condition that can have detrimental effects on wildlife.
Among all the major urban-associated factors, one has recently received a lot of attention: Anthropogenic noise. Expanding urbanization had led to a strong increase in the levels of background noise and there is increasing evidence that noise pollution can have a collection of harmful effect on wildlife, especially birds because they considerably rely on acoustic communication. Urban noise is characterized by high amplitude and low spectral frequencies. As a result, urbanization creates a novel acoustic environment in which high noise level can mask songs and others important avian communication signals. To date, most of the work about the impact of chronic noise exposure on wildlife has mainly focused on the masking of avian acoustic signals and the consequences of communication impairment. Because birds use songs mostly to attract mates and to defend their territories masking of these biologically important acoustic signals may have a dramatic impact on their

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