That Dreadful Thud

Have you ever been minding your own business when you hear that dreadful thud of a bird colliding with your window? Unfortunately, up to 1 billion birds die each year from window collisions. Why are such smart animals so clumsy? Well, it’s because (most) humans can use door frames, reflections, and other visual cues to anticipate the presence of glass. Birds, on the other hand, perceive reflected images as literal objects, so they fly into windows looking for food, shelter, or an escape route.

Good news, though! You can help these beloved little creatures of ours with a few precautions.

Good: Putting sticky notes or some other marker on the inside of glass can help.
Better: Decals, tape, paint, netting, and shutters on the outside of glass are all great options.
Best: Get some screens for your windows!

Ideally, you should eliminate any space larger than two inches, so birds see no viable way to fly between the decals/other objects that you’re sticking on your windows.

Worried about blocking your view or making your windows unsightly? Worry not, there are some great options out there (such as the bird decals pictured) to keep your windows bird-friendly and looking great. It’s also a great way to teach family and friends about the importance of protecting birds from window collisions.

Bonus points if you’re in the process of designing a new build or replacing windows – you might consider some professional solutions favored by architects, such as UV patterned or acid-etched glass.

We hope you’ll consider bird-proofing your windows to help our feathered friends!

Visit our birdfriendlyhouston.org website for more information on how you can be bird-friendly.
Other resources:
What about nighttime collisions? Learn more about Lights Out for Birds.

By Zineera Seth, Marketing and Events Manager, Houston Audubon 
& Anna Vallery, Conservation Specialist, Houston Audubon

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