Avalon Celeste Stevahn Owens

Avalon Celeste Stevahn Owens
Harvard University | Harvard · Rowland Institute

Doctor of Philosophy

About

18
Publications
8,997
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
501
Citations

Publications

Publications (18)
Article
Full-text available
Anthropogenic light pollution is a novel environmental disruption that affects the movement, foraging and mating behaviour of nocturnal animals. Most of these effects are sublethal, and their net impact on reproductive fitness and population persistence is often extrapolated from behavioural data. Without dedicated tracking of wild individuals, how...
Article
Full-text available
The expansion of human activity into natural habitats often results in the introduction of artificial light at night, which can disrupt local ecosystems. Recent advances in LED technology have enabled spectral tuning of artificial light sources, which could in theory limit their impact on vulnerable taxa. To date, however, experimental comparisons...
Preprint
The expansion of human activity into natural habitats often results in the introduction of artificial light at night, which can disrupt local ecosystems. Recent advances in LED technology have enabled spectral tuning of artificial light sources, which could in theory limit their impact on vulnerable taxa. To date, however, experimental comparisons...
Article
Artificial light at night (ALAN) is a major driver of firefly population declines, but its physiological effects are not well understood. To investigate the impact of ALAN on firefly development, we exposed larval Aquatica ficta fireflies to ALAN for two weeks. High larval mortality was observed in the periods of 1 to 68 days and 106 to 134 days po...
Article
• The rapid spread of artificial light at night (ALAN) poses myriad problems for nocturnal biodiversity. • Bioluminescent taxa that communicate via glowing lures, warning signals, or courtship advertisements may have their signals obscured by artificial illumination, unless the added light is spectrally tuned to reduce its impact. • Previous resear...
Article
Full-text available
Fireflies are charismatic beetles with attractive bioluminescent courtship displays that have recently been swept onto the global stage of nature tourism. Here, we provide the first comprehensive review of the geographic scope, magnitude, focal species, and other attributes of the major firefly tourism sites worldwide. Through targeted interviews a...
Article
Holometabolous insects exhibit complex life cycles in which both morphology and ecological niche change dramatically during development. In the larval stage, many insects have soft, slow-moving bodies and poor vision, limiting their ability to respond to environmental threats. Artificial light at night (ALAN) is an environmental perturbation known...
Article
Full-text available
In the original publication of this paper, a sentence in the “Habitat loss and fragmentation” section incorrectly left out a phrase to read “Genome-wide SNP (single nucleotide polymorphism) analysis of Photinus pyralis, a species widespread and abundant across the eastern United States, among populations, with Fst (fixation index) values averaging...
Article
Insect declines and their drivers have attracted considerable recent attention. Fireflies and glowworms are iconic insects whose conspicuous bioluminescent courtship displays carry unique cultural significance, giving them economic value as ecotourist attractions. Despite evidence of declines, a comprehensive review of the conservation status and t...
Article
Full-text available
Two key problems in trying to link rarity to extinction risk have been conflating threats with risk factors, and over-reliance on a rarity construct that fails to capture many relevant risk factors. In this study, we disentangle threats from risk factors and show how their interaction can be used to predict extinction risk. We also investigate the...
Article
Insects around the world are rapidly declining. Concerns over what this loss means for food security and ecological communities have compelled a growing number of researchers to search for the key drivers behind the declines. Habitat loss, pesticide use, invasive species, and climate change all have likely played a role, but we posit here that arti...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Fireflies are some of our most celebrated insects. They have immense cultural, biological, and economic importance and are important components of natural ecosystems. Their public appeal also makes them ideal flagship species for conservation. In this document, we outline the importance of fireflies and describe their life histories and threats to...
Poster
Full-text available
Where have all the fireflies gone? The Firefly Watch citizen science project was begun in 2008, spearheaded by a group of scientists supported by the Boston Museum of Science, to solicit help from the wider community in addressing the relative dearth of long-term data on bioluminescent firefly beetles (Coleoptera: Lampyridae). The process is simple...
Article
Full-text available
In recent decades, advances in lighting technology have precipitated exponential increases in night sky brightness worldwide, raising concerns in the scientific community about the impact of artificial light at night (ALAN) on crepuscular and nocturnal biodiversity. Long‐term records show that insect abundance has declined significantly over this t...
Poster
Avalon C.S. Owens¹, Sarah Sander Lower², Kathrin Stanger-Hall³, Sara Lewis¹ - Crepuscular fireflies such as Photinus pyralis emit yellower flashes (560-580 nm) than their nocturnal relatives (550-560 nm). This spectral shift is likely in response to ambient light environment: yellow contrasts more against green foliage visible at twilight. Firefly...
Article
Full-text available
Urbanization can radically disrupt natural ecosystems through alteration of the sensory environment. Habitat disturbances are predicted to favor behaviorally flexible species capable of adapting to altered environments. When artificial light at night (ALAN) is introduced into urban areas, it has the potential to impede reproduction of local firefly...