One Strike, and Birds are OUT!


turn off light pollution birds cityImagine you’ve been given a mission: navigate your way through a city with thousands of invisible barriers, without hitting any of them. Mission Totally Impossible? Well, for a lot of birds this is exactly what they deal with every day!

2 BILLION birds die in North America every year from smashing into windows.

If the same thing was happening to people, everyone on the planet would be gone after only three years!

You probably have a clumsy friend who runs into a glass door twice a week, but most of us can tell when there’s something between us and that sweet pair of sneakers in the store window.

To birds, the same scene looks totally different. That reflection of a tree in the window looks just like the real thing, so they keep flying full speed at the window until… SMACK! Half of the time the bird doesn’t survive.

Here’s something easy you can do to start to help – turn off the lights when you’re not using them! Once you’ve done that you can try some of these:

  • Organize a Star Party in your neighbourhood to celebrate the dark. Gaze up at the beauty of the night sky while giving migrating birds a break from bright lights!
  • Become a Bird Rescue Volunteer with the Fatal Light Awareness Program (FLAP) Find out more about what you can do, on the FLAP website.
  • Ask a parent to help you address a letter or postcard (see an example here) to the Mayor or Head of Planning in your city. Let them know why light pollution is a problem for birds, people, and other animals!
Earth Rangers is a non-profit organization that works to inspire and educate children about the environment. At kids can play games, discover amazing facts, meet animal ambassadors and fundraise to protect biodiversity.


  1. I really care about the birds and didn’t know about this. I’ll ask someone to help me with writing a letter or postcard to the mayor.