Nashville Symphony finds success coping with thousands of migrating birds that had settled at concert hall

Posted on: July 26, 2022

“Maybe you’d never heard of purple martins until last year when the roost of more than 100,000 migrating birds was nearing eviction from trees around Nashville Symphony,” writes Tasha A.F. Lemley in Wednesday’s (7/20) WPLN radio (Nashville). “At the symphony, they would swirl around in something like tornadoes of birds until they would land for the night—sleeping shoulder-to-shoulder on branches…. For the last two years, these birds have favored the [trees surrounding the Nashville Symphony’s Schermerhorn Symphony Center] as roosting grounds. Since the symphony’s trees have been recently been removed or deeply pruned, the birds no longer find a resting spot there. But where did they go? … On a Wednesday night in July, [bird biologist Melinda Welton] is waiting out near Jefferson Street bridge gazing at the sunset sky around 3 trees…. [At] 8:40 … in come hundreds of Martins. ‘That’s the spectacle you were hoping to see,’ she says…. Over the next 20 minutes, birds keep coming in. Sometimes a couple dozen at a time, sometimes a couple hundred. All in the dark.”