Native Bird Care & Rescue in Central Oregon
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Simple Solutions for Protecting Birds from Windows
One billion birds a year die from hitting windows
in North America.
500 million birds a year die on residential homes.
All strikes are preventable.
Bird Window Collision FAQs
Why Are Birds hitting my windows?
Windows reflect sky, tree canopy, and landscapes.
Windows on corners can appear to be a passageway.
Glass is invisible. Birds focus on flight path & do not see frames.
Window reflections seem safer as they're darker than canopy.
Will birds Survive if they fly off?
Birds are unlikely to survive if they fly off.
Most birds sustain at least a concussion from hitting a window, but usually other injuries as well.
Collisions cause brain injuries, internal injuries, fractures, dislocations, bill and eye injuries, neurological issues.
Most birds can still fly enough to get a distance away or into a tree after impact.
Inability to eat and forage cause starvation in injured birds who have flown off.
Hypothermia sets in quickly and is deadly in cold weather; collision impairs ability to stay warm.
Birds that fly off may land or fall to the ground where they are scavenged by other animals.
Always rescue window-stricken birds, place in box or paper bag, set in quiet, warm room, text rescue center.
WHY DON'T I SEE BIRDS AT THE BOTTOM OF MY WINDOWS?
Most are never seen as they land behind shrubs or are quickly scavenged.
Some predators (cats, crows, jays, raccoons) hunt windows that get a lot of strikes.
Carcasses might be cleaned up by maintenance people or homeowners.
Little birds decompose very quickly.
Why am I not seeing or hearing strikes?
Most window collisions happen without us hearing or seeing the impact.
Most happen in the early morning when birds are focused most intently on foraging.
People usually do not watch problem windows 24 hours a day to know if there are strikes.
If Only a couple hit my windows, is that ok?
Globally songbirds face an uncertain future, and many are in substantial - even tipping point - declines.
Windows are to birds today what DDT was to birds in the 1960s.
Without a concerted, national effort to save songbirds, many will go extinct.
Each bird life matters to that bird and his or her family/community.
In nature, no one species has more 'inherent' value than another, so yes each bird matters.
WHERE SHOULD BIRD FEEDERS BE TO PREVENT COLLISIONS?
Windows WITHOUT treatments:
Never place feeders directly in front of windows
Reconsider feeding if the window cannot be treated (feeding does not outweigh deaths).
Do not attract birds to yards with untreated windows or cats.
There is no safe area in front of a window, regardless of how far out (per
American Bird Conservancy)
Nature-scape between feeders and windows.
Windows WITH treatments that physically stop birds hitting the window:
Are 100% effective - place feeders anywhere.
These treatments are installed at least 4" away from the windows.
Windows WITH treatments that interrupt the window's reflection:
Treatments that interrupt refection, but allow impacts (films, on window screen, stickers):
Place very either very close or further away at 20-30'.
Place at feeders diagonal to the house, not in front of windows.
Should I plant native plants or feed birds?
Anything that attracts birds to our yards can put birds at risk.
If birds are perishing on our windows, than risk outweighs benefits.
In bird-safe yards, feeding and native plants are fine.
Bird feeding is not without its risks; it is not always good.
Keep plants that attract birds away from windows.
Protect birds from windows when using native plants.
Window Treatment Options
Treating windows' reflections of sky and landscape helps prevent bird collisions.
Solutions that physically prevent the bird from hitting the window are best.
Treatments that are not easily seen by birds from at least 10' away are least effective.
Landscaping to prevent strikes help birds in several ways.
DO WINDOW TREATMENTS BLOCK THE VIEW?
Many options have little effect on your ability to see out of the window.
Our eyes generally adjust to most of these treatments, and we stop seeing them.
Opaque treatments are great for upper windows where light is most important.
Not all birds see UV (mourning doves do not). UV decals or monofilament may not be seen.
Some crafty treatments are fun for children.
HOW MUCH DO WINDOW TREATMENTS COST?
Costs range from under $50 to far more.
Many DIY treatments can be done for very little cost.
Professional versions are always going to cost more.
Some professional treatment companies offer DIY instructions.
Physically stopping collisions - 100% effective
To stop a bird from physically contacting the windows, install treatments about 4" out from the window.
Invisible to our eyes after 1-2 days
Retains excellent view
Prevents impact completely
100% effective when hung 4" out from window
Use light garden (or wildlife) netting (1 inch holes)
Hang taut by securing the bottom
Hang on plant hangars, eaves, or curtain rods
Staple to nice frame to improve look
Birds do not get caught if hung taut
Cost & Visibility
Netting is affordable for large expanses
100' by 7' roll is about $20
Plant hangers are $6-15 each (need 4)
Or, use deep hooks
Netting is nearly invisible to the eye
Cameras adjust when taking photos through it
The view looking out through garden netting. Nearly invisible.
A bird photographer takes great pictures through his netting.
Interrupting windows' reflections - 65-80% effective
Dotted Markers, Films, & Other Films
Excellent for large, expansive windows
Easy to do on smaller windows
Interrupts reflections & passageways
Be selective, some increase reflection
Never use films showing landscapes, trees, wildlife
full films, $2.25 a foot x 60" width
Solyx bird-safety film
$ similar to above
dotted Markers ($18 for three 4' x 4' windows)
New window treatments at High Desert Museum.
Opaque screens of many styles can be used to add light, block birds.
Stops impacts if hung 4" out from window
Use longer hooks or plant hangars to hang away from window
Keep original window screens on windows
Window companies can make custom screen
DIY screen and frames at hardware store
Will reduce heat gain in summer
Parachute chords hanging strings, decorations
Simple, easy, & view is retained
Bird Savers has free instructions for DIY
Works great on patio doors
Secure bottoms to prevent swinging in the wind
Place 4" out from window for best protection
Product is more effective spaced every 2"
Small birds like hummingbirds can fly through 4" spaces
© Acopian Bird Savers parachute chord treatment at a nature reserve.
Decals & Tapes
Decals and Tapes/Decorations:
*Not effective if only a few are used
Interrupts/reduces reflection when placed close together
Various products offered
Place every 2” x 2" top to bottom
More expensive than other options
Bird Tape by American Bird Conservancy comes in 50’ roles or squares
Window film strips American Bird Conservancy
These decals should be spaced every 2", this is too wide
Decorations & Art
Hanging these out off the eaves can be pretty effective.
© American Bird Conservancy
These cute snowflakes are crafty, but need to be closer together. You could also hang decorations like this.
For large-scale solutions, larger windows, or nesting
Solyx bird-safety film
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