Sealand Waste, LLC VS Eastern Bluebird, Our NY State Bird

To The Reader’s Forum:

I have been involved in conservation efforts of the eastern bluebird since settling in the town of Carroll 50 years ago. I have a trail of 22 nestboxes along the route to the proposed landfill that Sealand wants to bring to our town. With 110 vehicles (77 are trucks) going to and from landfill, nest-building, feeding and fledginghatchlings will be directly impacted.

Sealandstates in the scoping document (Pg. 5-84) that they will “work with the NYSBS to relocate mynestboxes away from the road to avoid birdsbeing hit by the vehicles.” I have had only one pair of bluebirds that died due to being hit by a vehicle and they were not going to the nestboxbut were courting. Sealand also suggests “turning the entrance hole away from the road” and“moving the boxes back away from the edge of the road.” Bluebirds are very savvy about waiting for a quiet time before entering the box. Moving boxes back from roads into a pastureswould be detrimentalas cows use themfor scratching posts. Also, I would not be able to check boxesquickly, the less time spent walking to and from the nestbox, the better it is for the chicks.

Sealand tries to state a “do-good” case, but they miss the point of the large picture. The main areaof concern is notthat the adults will fly into vehicles, but that ofthe overall noise, disturbance, dust, and pollutants caused by the increased traffic. The mostserious consequence of increased traffic is that chicks confined in the nestbox areverysusceptible to lung infections (from dust and particulates) which can kill. The noise will cause bluebirds to leave because their peaceful, rural, farmland habitat will no longer be ideal.

Our New York state bird is thriving in our town, and it has taken 50 years for this to be so. People who have never seen a bluebird come to get a peek at babies in the nest, adults perching on overhead wires or flying by. I urge those in our town andsurrounding areas to become informed about this issue. Let the Eastern Bluebird stay here andlive here for years to come.

Elaine Crossley