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Scarborough Bans Fireworks At Higgins Beach To Protect Piping Plovers

Beach Concerts Cancelled-Nesting Birds
Steven Senne
AP file
In this July 12, 2007 file photo, an adult Piping Plover runs along a beach as waves lap on the shore in the background, in the Quonochontaug Conservation Area, in Westerly, R.I.

The Town of Scarborough says no fireworks will be allowed on parts of the popular Higgins Beach this summer because the loud noises freak out endangered piping plovers.

The loud noises created by fireworks can startle the birds and cause them to abandon their nests and young, resulting in a greater risk to their survival.

The town council voted to ban consumer fireworks from Route 77 to the coastline in order to protect plovers.

Councilor Jean-Marie Caterina said at a town meeting that the issue has been of concern for some residents since she was first elected close to a decade ago, and further actions may be warranted.

"I really am reluctant to ban fireworks in just one area, given the feedback, but we need to start somewhere," she said.

Town representatives say the ban is put in place for the moment but still under discussion.