Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Investigation of fallout events in Hutton’s shearwaters (Puffinus huttoni) associated with artificial lighting

TitleInvestigation of fallout events in Hutton’s shearwaters (Puffinus huttoni) associated with artificial lighting
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsDeppe, L, Rowley, O, Rowe, LK, Shi, N, McArthur, N, Gooday, O, Goldstien, SJ
JournalNotornis
Volume64
Issue4
Pagination181-191
Type of ArticleFull article
Keywordsartificial light, disorientation, Hutton’s shearwater, Kaikoura, moon phase, mortality, population impacts, Puffinus huttoni, weather effects
Abstract

The risk of disorientation by artificial lights and subsequent ‘fallout’ has become a widely recognised issue for nocturnal procellariiform species. Using data from community-based rescue campaigns and systematic research, we assessed the characteristics of fallout events observed in fledglings of the threatened New Zealand endemic Hutton’s shearwater (Puffinus huttoni) or Kaikōura tītī. Despite strong annual variation in observed fallout numbers, the proportion of annually produced fledglings collected as ‘fallout birds’ remained below 1% each year. Among those, more than 80% survived due to community rescue efforts. Fallout was found to increase significantly during new moon, while weather effects remained inconclusive. Most fallout occurred within brightly lit areas of Kaikōura township, particularly along its coastal roads. High light source densities and high wattage lights appeared to be influential in some areas but could only partly explain the spatial distribution of fallout at this small scale.

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