Would you like to learn how to stop birds flying into windows? Of course you would. Seeing birds hit your window is distressing. Most birds thankfully recover (don’t put them indoors, they will freak out more). But billions of birds are killed each year, often from internal injuries. So how can we help? The modern fashion of replacing old buildings with glass does not help, as birds have UV vision, so get confused and think they have a clear flight path. Other birds sometimes fight their own reflection, hit glass balconies or think your house is a garden, if they see garden plants inside.
Tips to Stop Birds Flying into Windows
- Turn off unused lights, especially in glass buildings
- Use task lights at night, and blinds
- Turn off unnecessary security lighting
- Print off free posters by San Francisco’s Light Out campaign
- Turn building lights off from dusk to dawn, during migration
- Preserve building facades (rather than always using glass)
- Use blinds, shutters & sheer curtain to filter sunlight
- Remove houseplants near windows (birds may think they are shelter)
- Install frosted windows where possible
- Do not burn candles near windows
- The Spruce has a super checklist to go through.
- BirdSafe has tips on how to make your home safe for birds
- If cats are not nearby, place bird baths or feeders nearby
- This means birds don’t have space to ‘gain momentum’ to crash into glass
Unless they are starving, it’s best to let birds find their own food, so they don’t come too close to windows, or rely on you (you could die). If you already feed birds, reduce food gradually (in summer, when there’s plenty of crumbs and natural food around). See more safety tips on wild bird foods.
Inventions to Help Stop Bird Strike
Those decals to stick on windows are not effective, unless they almost cover the window (birds will try to fly through any space larger than a few inches). More effective are screens that place a barrier between birds and glass, various visual tapes/barriers that create a blocked space, and bird-friendly glass.
- Ornilux & Guardian Glass make UV glass that birds can see
- BirdSafe has reviews of the best bird-strike prevention inventions