Dispersal of Light Pollution around Tennessee Avenue, Sewanee, Tennessee
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This study will involve using a light meter to measure the levels of light dispersal that surround various sources of human produced night lighting and GIS mapping these sources to form a light map of an area of the Sewanee campus. Street lamps, residential houses, and larger buildings will be measured to compare the levels of light dispersal. Photopollution is an ever growing problem as areas become more and more developed. Ecological light pollution is defined as chronic glare, increasing light sources and temporary erratic changes in lighting. Migrating birds can become disoriented by areas lit by bright night lighting making them vulnerable to predators and collisions with other birds. Mercury vapor lights, a common outdoor type of lighting, can impede the detection of sonar screeches of bats by moths, preventing them from avoiding predation (Longcore and Rich 2004). Artificial night lighting can have other more indirect effects on organism behavior than simply predator-prey relationships. Female Physalaemus pustulosus frogs are less selective of mates in lighted areas, which could have possible effects on genetic diversity for the future of the species (Navara and Nelson 2007). These adverse effects are worrisome and may be prescient on the Sewanee domain. Therefore, we propose the formulation of a light map to illustrate the extent of light dispersal on an area of the domain.
SubjectScholarship Sewanee 2011; University of the South, Sewanee, Tennessee; Light dispersal; Light meter; Photopollution; Ecological light pollution
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