7 Maine Lighthouses to Get Radio-Activated Sound Signals

In this Monday, Dec. 22, 2014 photo, foghorns that were retired long ago remain aimed towards the sea at Portland Head Light in Cape Elizabeth, Maine. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)
In this Monday, Dec. 22, 2014 photo, foghorns that were retired long ago remain aimed towards the sea at Portland Head Light in Cape Elizabeth, Maine. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)

HARPSWELL, Maine — The Coast Guard says it's replacing obsolete foghorns by installing radio-activated sound signals at seven lighthouses along Maine's coastline.

Lt. David Bourbeau tells the Portland Press Herald the sound signals will be installed in May at Halfway Rock, Matinicus Rock and Mount Desert Rock. They'll also be installed on Great Duck Island, Petit Manan Island, Libby Island and at the Little River Lighthouse.

Sailors can activate the lighthouse sound signals using a marine radio. The signal shuts off after an hour.

Bourbeau says the device will reduce the negative effects that continuous sound signals — such as those from foghorns — have on wildlife and migratory bird populations.

Foghorns sometimes emit sounds continuously during foggy conditions.

Seventeen fog detectors were replaced at Maine lighthouses last year.

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