Date of Defense


Date of Graduation



Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Sharon Gill

Second Advisor

Devin Bloom

Third Advisor

Maria Gigante


Humans have altered the global landscape through urbanization, vehicles, machinery and transportation corridors. A byproduct of this anthropogenic change is anthropogenic noise which interferes with acoustic communication among animals through masking. Masking caused by anthropogenic noise conceals sounds produced for vocal communication. Animals temporarily adjust the structure of their signals to avoid masking effect in habitats with high noise intensity, or habitats that are perceived as loud. What is unknown is whether animals will adjust their signals based on the intensity of noise experienced or regardless of the noise intensity experienced in the environment. In this study, I conducted playback experiments to determine the noise intensity tolerance threshold of house wrens, Troglodytes aedon. The results

demonstrated noise intensity did not affect the song rate, song duration or peak frequency of song across individuals. Since noise intensity did not affect birdsong, it suggests that species with song features similar to house wrens may be able to persist and do well in noisy habitats.

The research overview for non-expert publics may be viewed at the following website:

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Restricted