Weather radar for ecological forecasting can lessen hazards for migratory birds

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fairly difficult
Biologists discovered that a mere 10 nights of action are required to reduce risk to 50% of avian migrants passing over a given area in spring and autumn.
Forecasts aren't just for the weather. Scientists can use weather radar and related technology to chart the journeys of billions of migratory birds, which can help protect these global travelers from a growing array of threats.

In a new breakthrough on this front, a team led by Colorado State University used millions of observations from 143 weather surveillance radars to evaluate a forecasting system for nocturnal bird migration in the United States.

Using these tools, the team discovered that a mere 10 nights of action are required to reduce risk to 50% of avian migrants passing over a given area in spring and autumn. Specific actions are as simple as turning off nonessential outdoor lights.

Conservation Biology published the study, "Near-term ecological forecasting for dynamic aeroconservation of migratory birds," on April 8. Its release occurs just two weeks before peak migration season for birds in states including Texas and Florida. Colorado's peak will take place in the first two weeks of May.

A more 'mindful' approach can best protect migrating birds

CSU's Kyle Horton, lead author of the study and an assistant professor in the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology, said that status quo tools for protecting migrating birds are somewhat inefficient. These migrating birds can be negatively impacted by light pollution, wind energy and collisions with…
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