Thousands of birds are dying in Atlanta, USA
Someone, or something, is killing thousands of birds in Atlanta. Since spring, the death toll began rising every week.
For Atlanta office workers, the dead birds are a sad sight at their doorstep. Now, Audubon Society volunteers are tracking and finding the dead or dying birds, many of them in Sandy Springs, Dunwoody and Buckhead.
The most frequently found species is the ruby-throated hummingbird.
I took the birds’ deaths to heart, searching for the reason why the birds are dying.
I find it in our glittering urban architecture.
Birds have flown over north Georgia for millions of years, enjoying our trees and water to stop over on annual spring and fall migrations. But now, in the blink of an evolutionary eye, the flocks are finding a deadly obstacle.
Flying at night to avoid predators, the birds see brightly lighted skyscrapers. The lights attract attention. The birds fly into the glass walls and fall to their deaths.
Some are casualties of nighttime collisions with windows, while others circle in confusion until they become exhausted. When they land, they fall prey to other urban threats.
“Dozens of species are affected, including such priority species — those we’ve identified as most in need of and most likely to benefit from our help —as the Allen’s Hummingbird, Varied Thrush, Golden-winged Warbler, and Seaside Sparrow.”
The Audubon Society
This spring, for the first time Atlanta joins North Carolina as the only Southern states to combat the bird deaths. It’s a program called Lights Out Atlanta. First to sign up are Buckhead office towers managed by Highwoods Properties.
Vice President Jim Bacchetta acknowledges the threat his buildings pose, saying, “They are big towers, up in the sky, many of them reflective glass. We can’t fix that.”
But he can, and did, order that all non-essential lights go out from midnight to sunrise during the months of the Spring and Fall migration.
Other Atlanta businesses are looking at what the Lights Out Atlanta pledge can do for the birds.
Courtesy of cbs46.com