Lights Out Las Cruces---2023 Work Page
Springtime Migration: March 1-- June 15, 2023
Fall Migration: August 1-- November 15, 2023
The main goal for Lights Out Las Cruces is to raise public awareness of the risks to birds during their biannual migrations. It has been shown that when people are aware of what they can do to help, good things happen. The main contribution we can all make is to control our own night lighting. The steps are easy and most of the time they save us money.
Bird Migration Facts: What are the problems confronting birds during their migration? How can we track migration in our own neighborhoods? What should we do to help the birds? A truly amazing, informative resource is BirdCast.com (https://birdcast.info/), a great first place to start.
Steps for individuals: (suggested resource https://www.darksky.org/)
Do an audit of your home lighting and follow best practices:
• Don’t over light with excessively bright lights. Use only the minimum number of lumens needed for the application.
• Make sure outside lights aim down and are well-shielded (using full cut-off fixtures) so that they don’t create light trespass or glare.
• Turn off your outdoor lights when not in use or install motion sensors
• When converting outdoor lights to LED, choose “warm” color temperature bulbs (3,000 Kelvins or less).
Addressing Neighborhood lighting and Commercial Lighting. The idea of telling your neighbor to modify his/her night lighting may seem daunting! The Lighting section of International Dark Sky Association discusses “My Neighbor’s lighting” with several friendly suggestions. This is also a very informative section for business owners and property managers. Their goal is to achieve good results while maintaining neighborhood harmony. https://www.darksky.org/.
Within Las Cruces, we have some great examples of bird friendly lighting. The Electronic Caregiver Tower, our largest skyscraper at 10 stories, has no window lighting after dark. The birds and Mesilla Valley Audubon Society thank you, Electronic Caregivers.
National Audubon Society: Migratory Bird Initiative | Audubon In this reference, National Audubon Society makes its case for the public to emphasize the dangers inherent in bird migration in a world that is so dramatically changed from when migratory behavior first became an embedded instinct. Light pollution is a big problem with some easy solutions that can help the birds.
Texas Audubon Society: Lights Out Texas: This website is a very user-friendly source of information for individuals that are new to this movement and has some great ideas for visitors interested in promoting Lights Out activities.
As the 2023 Spring Migration approaches, the MVAS Conservation Committee hopes to present local articles on bird migration via our chapter’s Facebook page, eventually transferring them to this website. Check it out!
Monday Migration Series---- quick facts on bird migration
(Click on date to select file)
Monday Migration 5-1-2023 Swainson's Hawk
Monday Migration 5-8-2023 Rufous Hummingbird
Monday Migration 5-15-2023 Indviduals' Responsibilities
Monday Migration 5-22-2023 Why do we need to make every effort to protect birds?
Monday Migration 5/29/2023 Why are lights out such a big deal?
For individuals interested in the Lights Out Las Cruces initiative, we invite you to join Mesilla Valley Audubon Society and become a member of our Lights Out committee. If you would rather not join MVAS (and that is OK), and you have some suggestions or observations you would like to share, or if you would like to be on a mailing list to keep posted on our progress, we invite you to fill out the form below. In advance, thank you very much.
If you are a member of another organization that might be interested in working with Mesilla Valley Audubon Society, please let us know via the contact form. If you are a building owner or manager and have responses to this material, we would be very interested in hearing from you as well. We are all in this together.