Potthakudi villagers decided to switch off their streetlights when a native Robin decided to make her nest in the neighborhood. There are only 120 homes and 35 streetlights in Potthakudi village. The native Robin decided to hatch her eggs in the main lighting switchboard in the town.
Karuppu Raja, the man in charge of switching on the streetlights every evening, was the first person that discovered the nest. Raja who loves birds posted his discovery on local social media. He did this to alert the villagers and ask for their permission to switch off.
I wrote on WhatsApp that switching off the lights was the only solution because the bird will fly once it realizes there is a human touch or contact near its nest. I also told the group that we should save the bird and its hatchlings at any cost.Raja
Although some people complained about how lack of illumination at night would be inconvenient, Raja persuaded the villagers to cooperate with him. He told the villagers that several bird species have become critically endangered and they shouldn’t allow the India Robin to become extinct.
Potthakudi villagers then agreed to switch off their streetlights until the nestlings could fly the coop. The villagers went on a blackout for about 45 days and nights. Raja disconnected the switchboard of the streetlight from the power source to protect the bird and her chicks.
After the robin and her chicks finally flew away, the switchboard was connected immediately. The conservation efforts made towards the safety of the bird and her chicks never went unnoticed.