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Noisy Environments Can Cause Plants To Have Detrimental Effects

Noisy Environments are threatening for the plants and the animals causing them to suffer a lot. Humans have proliferated over the past few decades leaving the wildlife habitat untethered. It has created a pervasive rise in environmental sounds in their habitats with our gadgets, traffic, and industry. A growing body of research shows how noise pollution adversely affects human behavior. Alongside the detrimental effects have been observed in the plants as well.

To investigate the long-term ecological effects of persistent noise, researchers chose the Rattlesnake Canyon habitat management area in New Mexico. The area in the US southwest contains a high propensity of natural gas wells, some of which are coupled with compressors that emerge with chronic noises. These chronic noises often deteriorate the conditions prevailing in the habitat which are essential for plants’ and animals’ lives.

That is as loud “as being next to the speakers at a Black Sabbath concert or standing right next to the train tracks as the train goes by”, said Dr. Jenny Phillips, who was lead author of the study while at California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo.

The vegetation and human activity across both types of wells are quite identical and various researches have been conducted to find out its impacts on the natural community. In 2007, a team of researchers compared the vegetation in both contexts, finding the noise pollution had detrimental effects in two ways: seedling dissemination and germination (known as recruitment) of the woodland species.

Twelve years after that, in 2019, the researchers sought to examine the long-term impacts of this noisy ecosystem. They jotted down their research on the basis of initial data collection to determine whether the previously reported patterns have something to do with the current form of impact.

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