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ALAN Conference Series

ALAN 6 will take place from 16-18.06.2020 in Lleida, Spain.

Night Sky Data to the People!

A new website presents citizen science data

Touring Exhibition

Our touring exhibition with 15 posters can be borrowed for events!

'Loss of the Night' App

The 'Loss of the Night' app measures sky brightness! Take part in a world-wide citizen science project that measures star visibility and light pollution. The app is free!

City Night Time Lapse

This growing collection of time lapse videos of nights in urban centres provides insights how city lights change throughout the course of the night

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SP08: Effects of light pollution on obligatory nocturnal mammals (bats)

As part of subproject 08 coordinated by the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research (IZW), we investigated the effects of light pollution on the ecology and behaviour of bats. Furthermore, we studied to what extent increased predation of insects at street lamps might affect food webs.

Temperate bats feed predominantly on insects. Since many insects are attracted to lights, they accumulate around street lamps and thus represent a valuable and easy-to-access food source for bats. However, some bat species seem to avoid foraging in artificial light. Consequently, we expected that the species composition of ecosystems is largely affected by the presence of artificial light. Furthermore, we predicted that artificial light reduced the quality of daytime roosts if bats postpone their emerging at sunset because of dim light. However, such adverse effects could be compensated by using innovative light sources and new concepts of illumination.

Artificial light seems to attract certain insect groups and repel others. The increased predation risk of insects due to the presence of e.g. bats and spiders at street lights may largely influence whole food webs. To better understand such patterns, we compared food webs in dark and illuminated landscapes and investigated if potential differences are caused by light-specific predation risk. This project was part of a collaboration between the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research, the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research and the Leibniz Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries.

Scientist ist Daniel Lewanzik
Leader of subproject ist PD Dr. Christian Voigt

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