27th Bird Species Found on Green Roof
January 2019

The 27th bird species has been identified on the green roof, according to New York City Audubon, which has studied the environmental impact of the roof since 2014. In 2018, a Dark-eyed Junco was observed on the green roof, the first new species identified in at least two years. Since the 6.75-acre green roof was completed in 2014, a total of 26 bird species were found, along with five bat species and numerous orders of arthropods, until the latest bird species was spotted by members of the Audubon team.         

All of these birds – about 1,500 are observed each year – have utilized the roof in various ways over the years, including foraging, nesting, fly-overs and perching. In 2018, more than 100 Herring Gull nests also were identified on the roof during mating season – a significant increase than previous years. Last year, researchers identified 20 of the 27 bird species in 2018, including flycatchers (Eastern Phoebe and Eastern Kingbird) that were abundant on the roof in the fall season, similar to previous years. From May to October, 458 bat passes were recorded over 151 days, signifying a continued robust presence of bats on the green roof.

“The green roof continues to serve as an environmental beacon, demonstrating the value of green spaces in dense urban environments like New York City,” said Rebecca Marshall, our Energy and Sustainability Manager. “As the Javits Center has reinvented itself from bird killer to bird sanctuary, we are living proof that smart and sustainable changes to existing buildings can have a positive impact on the environment around us.”

The 2019 Sustainability Report, a biennial report that records the results of our sustainability program, will be released later this year. The first issue was published in 2017.