Highway noise deters communication between birds
Northern cardinals and tufted titmice are two abundant bird species in the woods of eastern North America. Many bird and mammal species rely on information from tufted titmice calls to detect and respond to dangerous predators. This causes important information networks to form around tufted titmouse communication. Results of a new study suggests that too much noise around highways keeps birds from hearing warnings from fellow birds about predators in the area, and that puts them at a higher risk of being eaten. It is also possible that the birds are hearing the alarms, but are too distracted by the noise to respond to them.