What is it about?

Restaurants are a common part of city and urban landscapes. These restaurants generate food waste that birds can take advantage of. Using over 20 years of bird monitoring data and records of local businesses, we investigate if restaurants influence where birds are distributed throughout an urban area. Our results show that certain species - including pigeons - are more likely to occur in restaurants are present.

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Why is it important?

We may often see birds eating from trash cans or picking over old food left out at tables. But it is still being determined if these one-off interactions impact bird communities as a whole. By using long-term data at a landscape level, we show that restaurants, and the food waste they generate, can shape wildlife communities.


This paper shows the importance of combining long-term data and how working with different sources - long-term ecological data and information from the Maricopa Association of Governments - can help answer interesting questions.

Jeffrey Brown
La Salle University

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: No fry zones: How restaurant distribution and abundance influence avian communities in the Phoenix, AZ metropolitan area, PLoS ONE, October 2022, PLOS, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0269334.
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