Wildlife Lighting

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission WildLight.gif U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service logo

The Wildlife Lighting Certification Program is a cooperative effort between the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service designed to educate the members of the public, the building industry, and government officials how to minimize adverse impacts to wildlife by using proper lighting methods

batsea turtle hatchlingGreat Horned Owl

The Concerns:
Lighting pollution is a serious threat to many types of wildlife. Each year, artificial lights cause disruption of behavior, injury and death to thousands of migrating birds, sea turtles and other reptiles, amphibians, and mammals, and invertebrates. To read more about the effects of lighting on these animals, go to About Lighting Pollution.

The Solution:
First and foremost, there is simply NO SUBSTITUTE FOR NATURALLY DARK HABITAT. Turning out unnecessary lights is simplest, most effective, and most energy efficient solution to this issue.

However, for situations where artificial lighting is absolutely required for safety and security, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission  and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have teamed up to develop the Wildlife Lighting Certification Program.  This program is designed to educate the members of the public, the building industry, and government officials how to minimize artificial light impacts to wildlife by using proper lighting methods and identifying appropriate lighting fixtures, shields, and lamps.  Appropriate wildlife lighting meets ALL THREE of the criteria below. For more information on these criteria, click on Certification Process.

Low lighting compared to a car

Keep it LOW - mount the fixture as low as possible to minimize light trespass, and use the lowest amount of light needed for the task

Keep it SHIELDED - fully shield the light so bulbs and/or glowing lenses are not visible to minimize light trespass

Keep it LONG - use long wavelength light sources (ambers and reds) in the appropriate lighting fixtures

How to Use This Site:

  • Lighting manufacturers, distributors and vendors: To determine if an appropriate fixture and/or lamp could be approved as Wildlife Lighting Certified and be placed on our certified web page, please view our Wildlife Lighting Certification Process.  
  • Home Owners, Property Managers, Developers, Code Enforcement Officers, and other interested parties: To minimize artificial lighting, please explore wildlife-friendly lighting options on the Certified Fixtures and Bulbs page.
  • Communities: To become a designated Wildlife Lighting Certified Community please see our certification process page.
  • Grants: To apply for lighting grants, please view the lighting grants program page.
  • Information: To learn more about wildlife lighting issues and the effects of artificial light on wildlife, please view pages on About Lighting Pollution and Wildlife Lighting Publications.


FWC Facts:
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Learn More at AskFWC