Brightly lit tall buildings can be deadly to birds at night, especially during migration. In North America alone,more birds are killed by preventable collisions every year than died as a result of the Exxon Valdez oil spill.

The Fatal Light Awareness Program (FLAP) is working to make Toronto a "bird-friendly" city. Vancouverites can do the same through the SongBird project and your help! Here is FLAP's advice:

Make the Commitment
- Designate a senior executive who will be responsible for ensuring that the building takes
action. Investigate the current night-lighting practices of the building. Start by taking
photographs of the building at night.
- Establish a building lighting policy that strives for minimal lighting at night all year.
- Add the responsibility and specifications for reduced lighting to the tenant operations manual,
and take steps to incorporate the same in the tenant lease.

Get Started
When lights must be on at night, examine and adopt alternatives suitable for the building that minimize bright, all-night, floor-wide lighting. Options include: installing motion-sensitive lighting; using desk lamps andtask lighting; re-programming timers; using lower intensity lighting; reducing perimeter lighting; re-schedulingwork and night cleaning; establishing interior working areas; using blinds and curtains. Permit occasional access by qualified bird rescuers to the buildingís courtyard, and wherever feasible, to ledges, roofs and other refuges for injured birds.

Spread the Word
- Inform employees about the issue and the buildingís policy, including the steps the building is
taking and how the employees can help.
- Remind employees each spring and fall about the added importance of minimal lighting
during peak migration seasons (late-March to end of May and mid-August to late-October),
through notices, newsletters, posters or other vehicles.
- Encourage other employees, visitors and tenants to become informed and take part in the
SongBird project or other endeavours that support the cause.

Stay on Course
- Examine the corporate lighting policy and practices regularly to promote continuous progress
towards minimizing night-lighting and bird collisions.
- Report annually on progress, problems and proposals for the coming year.
- Demonstrate a measurable reduction in night lighting toward the ultimate goal: all lights out,
all night, all year.

(sources: Leslie Evans Ogden, field biologist & author of "Collision Course" a study for the World Wildlife Fund)