Everybody knows that suncreen and swimsuits are requirements for fun beach weekends--but the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection has some additional tips, just in time for Fourth of July.
As beachgoers prepare to flip-flop their way to the shore this weekend, DEEP wants to remind them to take special notice of birds that nest or feed along the shoreline.
Our kites, fireworks, cats and dogs and even our own footsteps could disturb shorebirds, which include piping plovers, least terns, herons, and egrets, DEEP's website says.
DEEP reminds beachgoers to watch for warning signs and blocked off areas this weekend, and for the remainder of the summer, as disturbances cause the birds to flee nesting areas and abandon their eggs.
“Shorebirds and wading birds need special protection throughout their April to September nesting season,” Susan Frechette, DEEP Deputy Commissioner said in the article. “We urge beachgoers to keep fireworks and kites, especially kites that make noise, away from beach areas. We are also asking people to keep their pets leashed and to stay away from fenced areas.”
Here are a few of DEEP's recommendations for protection of the shorebirds:
- Do not allow your cats and dogs to roam freely near the coastline; keep them on the boat if you visit posted islands or beaches
- Dispose of your trash and food scraps safely--burying the garbage attracts predators
- Leave young birds alone, even if they're lost or can't fly, as parents tend to return after intruder leaves
Have fun at the beach this weekend, and don't forget that SPF!