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Dominoni, D. (2015). The effects of light pollution on biological rhythms of birds: an integrated, mechanistic perspective. J. of Ornith., 156(1), 409–418.
Abstract: Light pollution is considered a threat for biodiversity given the extent to which it can affect a vast number of behavioral and physiological processes in several species. This comes as no surprise as light is a fundamental, environmental cue through which organisms time their daily and seasonal activities, and alterations in the light environment have been found to affect profoundly the synchronization of the circadian clock, the endogenous mechanism that tracks and predicts variation in the external light/dark cycles. In this context, birds have been one of the most studied animal taxa, but our understanding of the effects of light pollution on the biological rhythms of avian species is mostly limited to behavioral responses. In order to understand which proximate mechanisms may be affected by artificial lights, we need an integrated perspective that focuses on light as a physiological signal, and especially on how photic information is perceived, decoded, and transmitted through the whole body. The aim of this review is to summarize the effects of light pollution on physiological and biochemical mechanisms that underlie changes in birdsâ€™ behavior, highlighting the current gaps in our knowledge and proposing future research avenues.