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Endangered birds halt Chicago beachfront music festival

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A Chicago beachfront music festival set for August has been cancelled following concerns about its impact on endangered shorebirds.

Organizers of Mamby on the Beach say the Aug. 23-24 festival was canceled due to “circumstances beyond our control,” including two federally-protected piping plovers nesting on Montrose Beach.

The Chicago Sun-Times reports the Chicago Ornithological Society says the two piping plovers nesting there have hatched at least three eggs. Up to 20,000 people were expected each day of the festival, which featured acts from various musical genres.

The small shorebird is on a number of state endangered species lists and is listed as threatened at the federal level.

Jill Niland of the Montrose Lakefront Coalition had pushed for cancellation. She says it’s “much better for the plovers.”

Festival organizers say tickets will be refunded.

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Information from: Chicago Sun-Times, http://chicago.suntimes.com/

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