Sounds of Nature Getting Harder to Hear

What does the world sound like without any human noise? Apparently, it’s getting harder to answer that question, as human-made noise has infiltrated almost every corner of the globe.

And it’s having an effect on the ecology of the planet. Human-made noises are disrupting communications between animals in nature.

From Wired Magazine:

“…animals divide up the acoustic spectrum so they don’t interfere with one another’s voices. He shows me a spectrogram of a wilderness recording, in which all the component noises are mapped according to pitch. It looks like the musical score for an orchestra, with each instrument in its place. No two species are using the same frequency. “That’s part of how they coexist so well,” Krause says. When they issue mating calls or all-important warning cries, they aren’t masked by the noises of other animals.

“But what happens when man-made noise intrudes? Maybe it’s the low rumble of nearby construction or the high whine of a turboprop. Either way, it interferes with a segment of the spectrum already in use, and suddenly some animal can’t make itself heard. The information flow in the jungle is compromised.” (read the whole story).