Skip to content U.S. Department of Transportation/Federal Highway AdministrationU.S. Department of Transportation/Federal Highway Administration
Office of Planning, Environment, & Realty (HEP)

Wildlife Protection

Keeping It Simple: Easy Ways to Help Wildlife Along Roads

Installing sea turtle-friendly lights on a bridge

Federally endangered loggerhead sea turtles lay their eggs on beaches, and the beaches on Georgia's barrier islands south of Savannah are no exception. After the young are hatched, they migrate back to the water during the night, using the moon for guidance. To keep lights on the 4,000 foot-long, cable-stayed Sidney Lanier Bridge from disorienting the migrating turtles, the Georgia Department of Transportation worked with the U.S. Coast Guard and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to install a minimum number of lights on both the bridge deck and the approach road and to use shielded low-sodium, low-wattage lights that cut glare and light scatter. Since every season there are an estimated 100-120 turtle eggs laid in each nest on the island beaches and on average approximately 64,000 of the nestlings make it to the water, the lights may protect a large number of turtles.
--Apr 25, 2003

Lisa Westberry, (404) 699-4433 or

Loggerhead sea turtle
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service photo
Loggerhead sea turtle

View Photo Gallery

On or Near Bridges - Georgia
Updated: 12/12/2012
HEP Home Planning Environment Real Estate
Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000