Action

Action Synopsis: Bird Conservation About Actions

Shield lights to reduce mortality from artificial lights

How is the evidence assessed?
  • Effectiveness
    50%
  • Certainty
    15%
  • Harms
    0%

Source countries

Key messages

A replicated, controlled study in Hawaii found that fewer Newell’s shearwaters Puffinus newelli were found grounded when security lights were shielded, compared to nights when they were not.

 

About key messages

Key messages provide a descriptive index to studies we have found that test this intervention.

Studies are not directly comparable or of equal value. When making decisions based on this evidence, you should consider factors such as study size, study design, reported metrics and relevance of the study to your situation, rather than simply counting the number of studies that support a particular interpretation.

Supporting evidence from individual studies

  1. A replicated, controlled study at a resort on Hawaii, USA, in 1980 and 1981 (Reed et al. 1985), found that significantly fewer Newell’s shearwaters Puffinus newelli were found grounded under security lights on nights when twelve of the brightest lights had ‘hoods’ placed on them, compared to alternate nights when lights were not shielded (272 birds on 32 ‘shielded’ nights vs. 444 birds on 32 control nights). The reduction was greater in 1981 (52%) than 1980 (29%), possibly because peak shearwater fledging coincided with a full moon (and so higher ambient light) in 1980, but with a new moon in 1981. The shields reduced upwards radiation of light and during the experiment most other lights on the resort were permanently shielded.

    Study and other actions tested
Please cite as:

Williams, D.R., Child, M.F., Dicks, L.V., Ockendon, N., Pople, R.G., Showler, D.A., Walsh, J.C., zu Ermgassen, E.K.H.J. & Sutherland, W.J. (2019) Bird Conservation. Pages 141-290 in: W.J. Sutherland, L.V. Dicks, N. Ockendon, S.O. Petrovan & R.K. Smith (eds) What Works in Conservation 2019. Open Book Publishers, Cambridge, U

Where has this evidence come from?

List of journals searched by synopsis

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Bird Conservation

This Action forms part of the Action Synopsis:

Bird Conservation

What Works in Conservation

What Works in Conservation provides expert assessments of the effectiveness of actions, based on summarised evidence in synopses. Subjects covered so far include amphibians, birds, terrestrial mammals, forests, peatland and control of freshwater invasive species. More are in progress.

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