Campus limits light pollution to protect birds

The Lincoln’s sparrow (left) and white-crowned sparrow are spring migrants. (Courtesy photo)

Washington University in St. Louis has joined ​​Lights Out Heartland, a local initiative to limit light pollution during periods of peak bird migration — April and May in the spring and September and October in the fall.

Every year, some 600,000 birds die after colliding with buildings. To limit disorienting lights, the university has adopted dark-sky certified lighting that is energy efficient, angled downward and capped to prevent light from beaming upward. 

The Office of Sustainability urges employees to close blinds in the evening and turn off building lights when not in use. Employees who observe lights that remain on all night are encouraged to contact Facilities or their building or zone manager. 

To learn more about ways to protect migrating birds, visit the Office of Sustainability website