Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

From the Fabricator: Birds and Glass

"There are many ways I can go with this story, but I’ll just say this: There are options for bird-friendly glazing. And it’s time for the focus to go from the glass being an issue to the glass being a solution. The owner/architect needs to be on some of the hooks here. The materials are there, and the designer needs to take into account bird migration paths and design accordingly. While you’ll see in the linked article that glass is listed as the bad guy, I sincerely hope that we as an industry can stand up and note that it simply shouldn’t be all on us."

http://glassmagazine.com/glassblog/fabricator-birds-and-glass-1513912

Duke ‘green’ building blamed for bird deaths

One of the first Duke University buildings to be certified as “green” appears to be causing more bird deaths than any other building on campus.  The Fitzpatrick Center for Interdisciplinary Engineering, Medicine and Applied Sciences caused 85 bird deaths during three 21-day surveys during the peak migration period spanning 2014-15."

Read more here: http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/community/durham-news/article24691264.html#storylink=cpy

Read more here:  http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/community/durham-news/article24691264.html

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

 
Photos: Mary&Pat

Indigo Bunting (Rackspace Bldg. 31C).


Working on ID (Bldg. 7E/A)



Cedar Waxwing remains (Bldg. 7E/A).

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

NEW SPECIES - Killdeer

Photos: Mary&Pat
 NEW SPECIES:  Killdeer (Bldg. 7C).


Northern Flicker (Bldg. 7E).

Proposed Legislation Could Prevent Millions of Bird Deaths

“Building collisions are certainly among the greatest man-made killers of birds. Three hundred million to one billion birds or more die each year from collisions with glass on buildings—from skyscrapers to homes. While this legislation is limited to federal buildings, it’s a very good start that could lead to more widespread applications of bird-friendly designs elsewhere,” said Dr. Christine Sheppard, ABC Bird Collisions Campaign Manager.

In the most comprehensive study of its kind, “Bird–building Collisions in the United States: Estimates of Annual Mortality and Species Vulnerability” published in January 2014, the species most commonly reported as building kills (collectively representing 35 percent of all records) were White-throated Sparrow, Dark-eyed Junco, Ovenbird, and Song Sparrow. However, the study found that some species are disproportionately vulnerable to building collisions. Several of these are birds of national conservation concern and fall victim primarily to certain building types. Those species include:
  • Golden-winged Warbler and Canada Warbler at low-rises, high-rises, and overall
  • Painted Bunting at low-rises and overall
  • Kentucky Warbler at low-rises and high-rises
  • Worm-eating Warbler at high-rises
More here:  http://www.abcbirds.org/newsandreports/releases/150513.html

Action Alert: Proposed Legislation Could Prevent Millions of Bird Deaths



U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (IL-05) and Rep. Morgan Griffith (VA-09) have introduced the Federal Bird-Safe Buildings Act (HR 2280).  The bill is designed to prevent the deaths of millions of birds by calling for each public building constructed, acquired, or significantly altered by the General Services Administration (GSA) to incorporate, to the maximum extent possible, bird-safe building materials and design features. Many buildings constructed by GSA are already, in fact, bird-friendly. The legislation would require GSA to take similar actions on existing buildings, where practicable.

“Migratory bird season in Chicago reminds us that birds are not only beautiful animals telling us that warmer weather is on its way; but they help generate billions of dollars annually to the U.S. economy through wildlife watching activities,” said Rep. Quigley. “However, collisions with glass buildings claim hundreds of millions of bird lives each year in the U.S. The Federal Bird-Safe Buildings Act, a cost neutral bill, would help prevent these deaths by including bird-safe building materials and design features across federal buildings.”

Please urge your U.S. Representative to support the 2015 Federal Bird-Safe Buildings Act, which would help prevent the deaths of millions of birds by including bird-safe building materials and design features across federal buildings.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Photos: Mary & Pat
Gray Catbird (Bldg. 12F).


Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Bldg. 14B).

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Monday, May 4, 2015

New Species - Eastern Kingbird

Photos: Kara N.



We found 2 Eastern Kingbirds today (Bldg. 14A).  They were right next to each other, just a couple feet apart.  Their journey ended at a VTCRC window today.


Gray Catbird remains (Bldg. 1A).

Window collisions by migratory bird species: urban geographical patterns and habitat associations



Marine Cusa, Donald A. Jackson, and Michael Mesure in Urban Ecosystems (2015)

Abstract

Bird collisions with buildings are an increasing concern and yet understanding the factors contributing to collisions at the species level remains largely unknown. This gap in our knowledge of species-specific strike patterns hinders the development of accurate estimates for the impact of death-by-collision on bird populations and impedes on our ability to minimize its effects. Our study offers the first examination of the impact of environmental variables on bird-window collisions at the species level. The Fatal Light Awareness Program Canada collected bird-window collision data in three distinct regions of Toronto, Canada during the migratory season of the years 2009 and 2010. Our results indicated that building percent window cover, exposed habitat cover, and cover of built structures significantly affect bird-window collisions. Multivariate analyses showed that the bird species that collided with buildings surrounded by a high level of urban greenery are species that typically occur in forested habitats and are foliage gleaners. In contrast, species that collided with buildings surrounded by a higher level of urbanization are species that typically occur in open woodland and are ground foragers. These results suggest that the composition of bird species colliding with buildings across various regions of the Greater Toronto Area is influenced by the local bird species community composition, by the configuration of the surrounding landscape, and by the levels of greenery around the buildings.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015


Working on ID (Bldg. 11B).


Our first Ruby-throated Hummingbird of 2015 (Bldg. 11A).

Monday, April 13, 2015



Confirming ID (Building 11B).

Light, Glass, and Bird—Building Collisions in an Urban Park

"Only 37 percent of carcasses were found by our monitors, suggesting that our estimate of bird mortality due to collisions has been too conservative."



Northeastern Naturalist 22(1):84-94. 2015
doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1656/045.022.0113
No Access
Kaitlyn L. Parkins1,2,*, Susan B. Elbin1 and Elle Barnes1,3
1 New York City Audubon, 71 West 23rd Street, Suite 1523, New York, NY 10010.
2 Fordham University, 441 East Fordham Road, Bronx, NY 10458.
3 New York University, 70 Washington Square South, New York, NY 10012
* Corresponding author - kaitlynlparkins@gmail.com.
Manuscript Editor: Greg Robertson

Abstract

Building collisions are a significant threat to birds in North America, and urban areas can be particularly hazardous to birds using city parks as stopover habitat. We examined the effects of light and glass on bird—building collisions in an urban park using New York City Audubon's collision-monitoring data from fall migration 2013 and photographic analysis of building facades. We found a significant positive relationship between the number of collisions and interior building light (rho = 1); however, the amount of light was strongly correlated with the amount of glass in building facades (r2 = 0.82). Carcass persistence at the site was examined using tagged, dead birds. Only 37 percent of carcasses were found by our monitors, suggesting that our estimate of bird mortality due to collisions has been too conservative. The amount of glass on a building facade may have an equal or greater effect on bird— building collisions than the amount of light emitted from the facade. Mitigation of both light and glass are needed to reduce bird—building collisions in urban areas.
 

How a giant Manhattan building learned to stop murdering birds

"Roughly 470 birds were killed over a five-year period between 2005 and 2009. It was quite grisly."

In comparison, the buildings at the VTCRC killed 192 birds in 1 year.


http://theweek.com/articles/545545/how-giant-manhattan-building-learned-stop-murdering-birds

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Glass architecture is killing millions of migratory birds

"Most casualties are small—sparrows, starlings, warblers, and wood thrushes (which happens to be Washington’s official bird). Twice a year during spring and autumn, millions of birds travel thousands of miles, tracing ancient routes or flyways in search of fertile feeding and nesting grounds."

"Frequently, birds are lured by artificial lights or become disoriented by smooth, transparent surfaces and slam right into the glass. Most die on impact; those that are maimed often fade overnight before the Lights Out crew can come to their rescue."
 
http://qz.com/372493/lights-out/

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Birds versus buildings a deadly problem in Toronto

"On Friday, about 40 FLAP volunteers implored the public to really grasp the impact — no pun intended, they said — of the crashes by displaying the bodies of about 1,800 crash victims at their annual bird layout, hosted by the Royal Ontario Museum."

http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2015/03/22/birds-versus-buildings-a-deadly-problem-in-toronto.html
Photo: Aylett L.
America Robin (Signature Engineering Building).

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Photos: David Tilson


Reported Golden-crowned Kinglet (Fralin Hall).

One of the many fat and happy cats in the managed feral cat colony in the VTCRC.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Spring is here

Photo: Caitlin G.
 American Robin (Building 7A).

Our 225th bird-window collision death.

Light pollution influences the seasonal start of bird vocalisations

"A negative impact of artificial night lighting on natural populations is now widely recognised and no longer contested. Artificial light at night attracts nocturnal animals, including migrating birds. This can lead to disorientation and is the cause of death of many birds that crash into the lighted objects."

Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2015-03-pollution-seasonal-bird-vocalisations.html#jCpA negative impact of artificial night lighting on natural populations is now widely recognised and no longer contested. Artificial light at night attracts nocturnal animals, including migrating birds. This can lead to disorientation and is the cause of death of many birds that crash into the lighted objects.
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Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2015-03-pollution-seasonal-bird-vocalisations.html#jCp
A negative impact of artificial night lighting on natural populations is now widely recognised and no longer contested. Artificial light at night attracts nocturnal animals, including migrating birds. This can lead to disorientation and is the cause of death of many birds that crash into the lighted objects.

Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2015-03-pollution-seasonal-bird-vocalisations.html#jCp

A negative impact of artificial night lighting on natural populations is now widely recognised and no longer contested. Artificial light at night attracts nocturnal animals, including migrating birds. This can lead to disorientation and is the cause of death of many birds that crash into the lighted objects.

Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2015-03-pollution-seasonal-bird-vocalisations.html#jCp
A negative impact of artificial night lighting on natural populations is now widely recognised and no longer contested. Artificial light at night attracts nocturnal animals, including migrating birds. This can lead to disorientation and is the cause of death of many birds that crash into the lighted objects.

Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2015-03-pollution-seasonal-bird-vocalisations.html#jCp
Full article here:
http://phys.org/news/2015-03-pollution-seasonal-bird-vocalisations.html