Anthropogenic noise, generated by recreational and commercial boating, affects ecological responses of marine species particularly where the noise is chronic like coastal areas largely exploited by tourism. To date, most research to seek direct relationships between noise and ecological responses of biota is based on laboratory experiments, while scant information is available from at whole-of-ecosystem level from the wild. DINAUTIS is a project designed to study the multi-level ecological response of marine biota subjected to chronic noise and the effect of some “by product” of recreational boating (e.g. PAH contamination). Thus, in the present study, we report on different aspects studied in a Mediterranean Marine Protected Area (Capo Gallo, S-Tyrrhenian) which is intensely exploited during spring and summer by tourism to assess possible loss of ecosystem good and services. Throughout the study period (summer 2007- spring 2009), we collected by comparing take vs no-take areas: 1. data on traffic volume and noise pressure of MPA (96,000 boat passages in 12 weeks); 2. data on the behaviour (habitat use, feeding and reproduction) of the most abundant pelagic species of the area, C. chromis (significant alteration of behavioural diversity with and without noise); 3. data contamination by PAHs coming from boat engines (accumulation in tissues of intertidal invertebrates - Monodonta turbinata); 4. data on social perception by local populations (recreational boating represents a disturbance for the MPA). DINAUTIS data will be elaborated to assess potential economic loss due to the noise to induce policy makers to explore alternative management strategies.
|Number of pages||1|
|Publication status||Published - 2009|