Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Preventing bird strikes

Ever since moving to the country seven years ago, I've been trying to find a good solution to prevent birds from hitting our windows. Based on some of the research I've done, birds strike the windows because they see the reflection of trees and think they are flying to a tree. Bird strikes are often fatal and they seem to happen more often on cloudy days. I felt bad hearing a bird hit the window knowing I was drawing them to my yard with my bird feeders.

I moved the location of the feeders to be away from the windows and that helped quite a bit but I still had a few per summer. That I knew about anyways, I assume that it was more. Last summer I tried attaching bird scare tape, a type of reflective streamer, to the outside of the windows. It would flap in the wind and I was hoping it would alert the birds. While sitting in the backyard one day, I saw a beautiful evening grosbeak hit the window that had a streamer so I knew that it wasn't working. The injured bird stayed in the cedar bushes for a couple hours, it seemed alert and finally flew away. I was so thankful it seemed to be okay but I knew that I needed a better solution.

Research showed that birds won't fly through vertical spaces 4" or smaller so this year I decided to go with ABC Bird Tape by the American Bird Conservancy. It's a tape you stick to the outside of your windows every 4" and allows birds to see that there's a window. You can still see out the window and it alerts the birds. I spent about a week putting it on most of the windows. I still have to figure out how to do the second floor windows that don't have a first floor roof to stand on. Here's hoping this solution works, I believe it will just by looking at the windows. I also added some maple leaf bird avoidance decals to the sugar shack windows after finding a dead bird there.

A box of the bird tape

 Paris, one of my cats, supervising from the safety of the screened-in porch

Before picture of the window showing the ineffective scare tape I tried last summer

 After picture using bird tape

 Applying the bird tape to the kitchen nook area

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