Help birds migrate home, dim the lights in yours


Millions of birds will fly over Oregon during the next three nights

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — The Portland Audubon Society is urging Oregonians to go “Lights Out” for the next three nights to help migratory birds.

Around 7.3 million birds are expected to fly over Oregon on Sunday night alone, according to the Colorado State University Aeroecology Lab, which has an interactive map on its website.

Most birds migrate at night, according to the Audubon Society, because the atmosphere is more stable and cooler temperatures help the animals keep from overheating. It also offers cover from daytime predators like hawks.

But light pollution can make it more difficult for birds to find their way. Artificial lights can attract and disorient them, and even result in deadly collisions with structures like buildings and communication towers, according to CSU. That’s why bird experts ask people to turn off their outdoor lights and close their shades to reduce sky glow.

Millions of birds are expected to fly over Oregon the nights of September 27-29 (courtesy CSU Aeroco Lab)

The busiest nights for birds in Oregon’s skies are forecast to be September 27-29, with the 27th having the most winged wanderers.

Some 4 million birds are expected to fly over the state Monday night, and another 3.6 million should be passing through Tuesday.

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