I never got around to writing part two of my article, “The Hazards of Being a Bird,” but now I need to revisit something I talked about in part one. I wrote about the struggle to stop installation of a large wind turbine in the Globally Important Bird Area on the shore of Lake Erie in northern Ohio (at Camp Perry). This area is where we go each May to witness the amazing spectacle of songbird migration at Magee Marsh, to watch the birds while they rest and feed before resuming their dangerous and exhausting journey northward. It’s one of the most inspiring things I’ve ever seen in nature — thousands and thousands of colorful warblers and other songbirds filling the trees like singing ornaments. It forever changed the way I look at birds, and kindled a strong desire to protect them from man-made harm.
Which brings me to this: While efforts are continuing in the fight to stop the Camp Perry turbine I wrote about in my earlier article, we’ve just been alerted to another large turbine installation in the same area, at the Lake Erie Business Park. This one appears to be imminent, as the turbine parts are already on site. Kim Kaufman wrote a long blog post about the details here, including ways you can reach out to the proper officials if you want to help us try to stop this one too. I hope you’ll take a moment to click over there to read what she’s written, and that you’ll be motivated to send a polite email (or two) expressing your concern about the unsuitability of this turbine for such a critical migration stopover point.
And if you’re really motivated to do something powerful in addition to sending letters and emails, I’d suggest making a donation to the Black Swamp Bird Observatory in Oak Harbor, Ohio. This fantastic nonprofit, run by Kim Kaufman, is the tiny powerhouse behind the Biggest Week in American Birding as well as being one of the best “bird PR” organizations I’ve ever seen. They’re good people and they do great things with our money.