Date: 5/7/18 8:42 pm
From: Alice Elliott <alelliot...>
Subject: [birders] Help Prevent Window Collisions During Migration
Hey folks,
It's been quite a busy listserv lately, so I'll make this quick.

I come to you as the co-founder of Washtenaw Safe Passage
<https://www.facebook.com/washtenawsafepassage> (and this year, an intern
at the Bird Center of Washtenaw County). We work to reduce window strikes
across Washtenaw County and beyond.

*The Problem*
According to Loss & Loss 2014
<http://www.bioone.org/doi/pdf/10.1650/CONDOR-13-090.1>, windows kill up to
998 million birds a year (2-5% of the North American population of birds).
According to Klem 2009
<https://www.muhlenberg.edu/media/contentassets/images/academics/biology/biology/faculty/klem/aco/documents/Klem-Et-al-2009-A-L-Risk-Factors-WJO-121-01-126-134-l.pdf>,
about 34 million birds are killed in the average urban US city. But
*migration* is when we see window strikes *skyrocket*. Since we got our
start in 2015, Washtenaw Safe Passage volunteers have collected over 300
window strike victims (only 2 survived), the *vast *majority of which were
killed during migration.

*Why You Should Care*
44% of strikes come from buildings 1-3 stories tall (meaning houses), and
56% come from buildings 4-11 stories tall (i.e. apartments).
<https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/stop-blaming-cats-as-many-as-988-million-birds-die-annually-in-window-collisions/2014/02/03/9837fe80-8866-11e3-916e-e01534b1e132_story.html>
(Incidentally,
please ignore the headline of that article-- outdoor cats are also terrible
for birds, but they are not what Safe Passage focuses on). By making your
home safe for birds, you are helping that many more birds get through
migration safely.

*What You Can Do*
Since birds see reflections, not glass, you need to break up that
reflection. And a *single falcon decal isn't enough!* There must be enough
decals so that the birds will not try to fly around them. To prevent
collisions, decals must be spaced every 2 inches: the “2 x 2 rule”, as
published by the American Bird Conservancy.




Products like Feather Friendly, Acopian BirdSavers, ABC BirdTape, and more
are designed to prevent bird strikes, and can easily be found with a quick
Google search:


For those more concerned with aesthetics, window films offer an elegant
alternative:


For the artistically inclined, tempera paint offers a washable way to make
your windows bird-safe and beautiful:



(*Note that the left window is NOT bird safe! See the big open spaces
between the purple birds? But it will be safe when the artist finishes
painting the white dots.)*


If you find that a bird has hit your window, please call the *Bird Center
of Washtenaw County* immediately: 734-761-9640. We are open from 7 AM to 9
PM; if you can't reach us, please keep the bird in a box, away from light
and noise, and handle it as little as possible. *Do not feed or water the
bird*.

Please don't hesitate to reach out with questions, either about
volunteering with Safe Passage (we always need more people!) or about
making your windows bird-safe. I love helping people with this issue, so I
am always happy to provide consultation on windows. You can reach me at
<aliceell...> You can also follow Washtenaw Safe Passage on Facebook
by clicking here <https://www.facebook.com/washtenawsafepassage>!

Thank you for helping make the skies safe for birds!
-Alice

PS Lights are important too! In fact, thanks to the tireless advocacy of
many who came before me, Ann Arbor has a resolution in place for high-rises
<https://www.a2gov.org/departments/Parks-Recreation/NAP/birds/Pages/SafePassage.aspx>,
at night, to turn off their lights on the fifth floor and above during
migration. However, due to the fact that Washtenaw County is mostly
low-rises (and thus does not have as much of an issue with nocturnal
collisions), Washtenaw Safe Passage focuses more on window strikes.

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