Attraction of seabirds and birds generally, to artificially lit structures resulting in injury or death is an ongoing concern. Apart from risk of physical injury the expenditure of energy due to such attraction, particularly during critical life stages e.g., migration may affect survival rates.
Leach’s Storm Petrels (Oceanodroma leucorhoa) are widely distributed across Canada’s East Coast with large breeding colonies on islands along the coasts of both Newfoundland and Nova Scotia, and small colonies in Québec, Labrador, New Brunswick and Maine. Their nighttime foraging and migratory behaviors across the East Coast Offshore make them particularly vulnerable to attraction to the artificial lighting on offshore oil and gas installations and marine vessels of all kinds. Recent research findings from colony censuses that document a significant population decline at most, but not all colonies, over the past thirty years accentuating the risk to these populations.
To develop a program of research aimed to better understand if and how seabirds, in particular, Leach’s storm petrels, are attracted to light generated by oil and gas activities in Atlantic offshore.