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Ann Arbor officials urge residents to turn lights off to help migratory birds

Migratory geese
Migratory geese

Ann Arbor’s Natural Area Preservation Program is trying to make it safer and easier for migratory birds to pass through the area.

City officials are urging people and businesses to minimize outdoor lighting and keep window blinds closed from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m., especially if they are located in one of the city’s taller buildings.

It’s part of a larger statewide effort that’s happening from March 15 to May 31st to help protect birds as they migrate.

Juliet Berger is the city’s ornithologist and the President of the Washtenaw Audubon Society. She says building lights pose a danger to many bird species that use the stars to migrate at night.

“They can run into windows. They can exhaust themselves. They’re going around lights. It’s the cause of mortality for millions of birds each year."

More than 250 different species of migrating birds pass over Ann Arbor every spring.

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Taylor Pinson is a former WEMU news reporter and engineer.
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