Dallas Mayor Proclaims ‘Lights Out Nights' to Help Protect Migratory Birds

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The City of Dallas has proclaimed the period between April 19 and May 7 as "Lights Out Nights" in an effort to protect migratory birds.

According to a proclamation released by Mayor Eric Johnson, every spring and fall, nearly two billion birds travel through Texas.

This number represents between a quarter and a third of all birds migrating throughout the United States, and much of this migration occurs at night, Mayor Johnson said.

According to Mayor Johnson, these birds must contend with light pollution that attracts and disorients them, making them vulnerable to collisions with buildings and other urban threats.

Peer reviewed research estimates that up to one billion birds die in collisions with buildings in the United States annually, Johnson said in a proclamation.

According to one study, Dallas was ranked third of the 125 most populous American cities for exposing migrating birds to light pollution.

Dallas, which is recognized as one of the seven cities certified as a “Bird City” by Texas Parks and Wildlife, is joining an international Lights Out effort by turning off non-essential lighting during critical migration periods.

Turning off non-essential lights reduces hazards to migrating birds, allowing them to safely proceed with their journeys, Johnson said.

Lights Out Texas, a statewide initiative that aims to raise awareness of this issue, is led by a coalition of conservation non-profits, universities, governmental organizations, and Texans dedicated to the conservation of birds.

All Dallas residents and business owners are encouraged to help protect birds by turning off non-essential lighting during the spring critical bird migration period, between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. from April 19 to May 7.

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