Spring migration brings birds through Chicago

Millions of birds will be migrating through the Chicago area this spring, and Lincoln Park Zoo has a few suggestions for making their transit safe and friendly.

Skyscrapers, windows and pets can create potentially deadly obstacles for feathered visitors, but city dwellers can do to a few simple things to help protect migratory birds, the zoo said today. 

The Lincoln Park Zoo suggests:

--Turn off lights in empty rooms and offices because artificial lights can disorient migrating birds.

--Remove plants from window sills as birds might try to fly through the window to get to the plants.

--Close window blinds, at least three-quarters, to help birds see the window.

--Soap large panes of glass that do not have blinds.

--Keep dogs leashed in urban parks, forest preserves and nature areas.

--Keep cats indoors.

The Lincoln Park Zoo's Urban Wildlife Institute especially asks that people keep their dogs on leashes in natural areas and along the lakefront. Besides protecting migratory wildlife, it's the law except for dog beach or other specific no-leash areas.

These steps could save the lives of hundreds of thousands of birds during the migratory bird season – mid-March to early June, according to the Lincoln Park Zoo.
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