We've shared this information before, regarding outdoor lighting and the negative impact it can have on bird migration, but experts have put out a reminder that fall bird migration is underway, and here's how you can do your part to help with light pollution.

Lights Out Initiative, The Background

Earlier this year it was announced that legislation was introduced to 'limit outdoor lighting at night' in order to better protect migrating birds.  This initiative titled the 'Dark Skies Act' was introduced by a NY Senator and Assemblywoman.

The New York State Senate shared that in just one night, last fall, workers outside two downtown New York City buildings found 205 migratory birds had died from flying into buildings.  The same report shared that each year, in New York City alone, between 90,000 and 230,000 birds are killed from flying into building glass.

Eventually, the 'Lights Out' Initiative was launched in NYS, which directed state buildings to shut off outdoor lighting by 11 pm through the end of the breeding season in order to help birds successfully migrate throughout New York.

coffeekai for Canva
coffeekai for Canva

Late Summer/Fall Peak Migration

While fall migration dates technically run from August 15th through November 15th, apparently peak migration for our feathered friends is happening right now.  A recent post by the Catskill Native Nursery, a garden center here in Kerhonkson in the Hudson Valley, provided a friendly reminder for us to go 'lights out' for birds during peak migration between September 6th and October 6th.

The linked post above provides a quick and easy guide to what types of lights/bulbs are best, and worst for migrating birds, and specifically addresses songbirds who primarily migrate at night.  A simple bulb switch, or adjusting the automatic turn-on function on your outdoor lighting can certainly make a difference for the migrating bird population.

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