Current Projects

Lights Out UMB

Save migrating birds by turning off your lights when you leave!

After receiving emails about and photos of birds on UMB’s campus who have died due to colliding with our buildings, the UMB Office of Sustainability is starting a bird strikes awareness campaign in preparation for spring and fall migrations.

The Problem:

Birds generally do not see clear or reflective glass; glass reflectivity and transparency create a lethal illusion of clear airspace that birds do not see as a barrier. At night during spring and fall bird migrations, birds can be attracted to lighted structures resulting in collisions and entrapment, which can result in concentrated bird mortality events.

Mitigation Approaches:

We are focusing on a Lights Out UMB campaign to support the Lights Out Baltimore initiative, particularly for atrium areas and glass buildings from the ground up to 30 ft in height between the hours of 11pm and 6am. Our Building Automation Systems team is working to identify opportunities to reduce lighting centrally for applicable buildings that are tied into our Building Automation Systems (BAS). However, for many buildings that are not tied into our BAS, lights will need to be turned off manually.

What You Can Do:

As a building occupant, please turn off your lights each day when you leave. If for some reason you are unable to turn off interior lights, draw window blinds, shades, drapes or window coverings to prevent birds from seeing the light.

Looking to go a step further? If you see a dead bird on UMB’s campus (or anywhere in Baltimore City), please report it using the Lights Out Baltimore page on iNaturalist.

Thank you for your cooperation and participation as part of the UMB community; your efforts to help make our campus a more environmentally sustainable place are greatly appreciated!

Download Lights Out UMB Promotional Materials Here


Alignment with Strategic Plan:

Utilities and Emissions: Minimize the environmental impacts of UMB's built environment. Improve UMB's practices to provide ecological landscapes that benefit all life within our campus community.