Hazard Reduction

Migration exposes birds to many natural hazards, but the degree of human-caused mortality incurred at artificial objects or by human-introduced contaminants or from non-native predators has a devastating cumulative impact on populations of migratory birds. Combine mortality due to hazards with those that occur due to degradation of breeding, stopover, and wintering habitats, and the outlook can be bleak for many migratory species. The good news though, is that through the hazard reduction component of the Urban Conservation Treaty for Migratory Birds, cities can be made safer for all birds, migratory and resident. Refer to Bird Hazards in the application and reference materials section for a listfor a list.

Examples of hazard reduction projects include:
  • Education and outreach campaigns to the general public, businesses, and building managers, to turn-off lights in and on tall buildings at night, particularly during migration periods.
  • Education and outreach campaign to individuals of all ages on keeping cats indoors (See National Programs for a description of American Bird Conservancy's Cats Indoors! Campaign).
  • Partner with local volunteer organizations to help conduct regular clean-ups toremoved trash in and near wetlands or ponds.
  • Review city practices on pesticide application. Consider alternatives, or use less harmful compounds.
  • Conduct an education and outreach campaign to the general public and landscape business owners and employees on proper types and use of pesticides.
  • Educate about local bird nesting periods, so landscaping activities can be conducted at times that will not affect nesting birds or their young.