US Air Force to cut lighting at Hawaii station to help birds

2017-04-03 18:47
(Liz Bradford, AP, Bruce Museum)

(Liz Bradford, AP, Bruce Museum)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Honolulu — The US Air Force will reduce exterior lighting at a Hawaii facility to help protect endangered and threatened seabirds there.

The Air Force agreed to reduce lighting at a mountaintop radar facility on the island of Kauai, The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported on Sunday. 

After the announcement, the Centre for Biological Diversity said it no longer intends to sue the Air Force.

The non-profit conservation group says the threatened Newell's shearwater and Hawaiian petrel are attracted to bright lights at night, which can cause crashes onto the ground and sometimes death.

The centre believes lights at the Kokee Air Force Station caused more than 130 birds to fall out of the air in 2015, including Hawaiian petrels, endangered band-rumped storm petrels and Newell's shearwaters. Most of them died, the centre said.

The Kokee Air Force Station was founded in 1961 to detect and track all aircraft operating near Hawaii.

The Air Force has taken steps to try to reduce the bird losses over the years, including switching from white and yellow exterior bulbs to green ones in 2013, according to the Fish and Wildlife Service.

The Air Force also said last June that it had agreed to turn off outside lights from April through December, when birds are going to and from colonies.

But the Centre for Biological Diversity threatened legal action at the end of June, saying the Air Force was violating the Endangered Species Act by not updating its formal consultation about seabirds with the Fish and Wildlife Service.

The centre said the Air Force reinitiated the consultation and agreed to ongoing protective measures in response.

The Air Force is "committed to protecting the threatened and endangered bird species that frequent the area around Mt. Kokee Air Force Station," Col. Frank Flores wrote in an email to The Star-Advertiser. Flores is the commander of the Pacific Air Forces Regional Support Centre, which provides oversight for Kokee Station.

"We have collaborated closely with US Fish and Wildlife Services over the years on this issue. We take environmental stewardship very seriously and will continue to partner with USFWS to protect these species," Flores wrote.
 

Read more on:    us  |  hawaii  |  marine life

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/World
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.