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Author (down) York, J E; Young, A J; Radford, A N
Title Singing in the moonlight: dawn song performance of a diurnal bird varies with lunar phase Type Journal Article
Year 2014 Publication Biology letters Abbreviated Journal
Volume 10 Issue 1 Pages 20130970
Keywords animals; birds; signalling behaviour; photoperiod
Abstract It is well established that the lunar cycle can affect the behaviour of nocturnal animals, but its potential to have a similar influence on diurnal species has received less research attention. Here, we demonstrate that the dawn song of a cooperative songbird, the white-browed sparrow weaver (Plocepasser mahali), varies with moon phase. When the moon was above the horizon at dawn, males began singing on average 10 min earlier, if there was a full moon compared with a new moon, resulting in a 67% mean increase in performance period and greater total song output. The lack of a difference between full and new moon dawns when the moon was below the horizon suggests that the observed effects were driven by light intensity, rather than driven by other factors associated with moon phase. Effects of the lunar cycle on twilight signalling behaviour have implications for both pure and applied animal communication research.
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Call Number LoNNe @ schroer @ Serial 1609
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