It's for the birds: N.S. wildlife rehab centre selling tape to prevent window strikes

·2 min read
Birds often fly into windows because they're seeing a reflection of what's outside, not what's inside the building. (Ferne Williams - image credit)
Birds often fly into windows because they're seeing a reflection of what's outside, not what's inside the building. (Ferne Williams - image credit)

A wildlife rehabilitation centre in Brookfield, N.S., has partnered with an American company to sell tape that helps prevent birds from flying into windows and harming themselves.

Brenda Boates, the wildlife operations manager at the Cobequid Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre, said she started looking into the tape when a number of young birds including hawks, falcons and eagles were injured after colliding with windows last fall.

"It's very distressing to see that because it's hard for them to grow up. They have a rough go their first year already so I looked into a solution,"  Boates told CBC Radio's Mainstreet on Thursday.

She said birds often fly into windows because they're seeing a reflection of what's outside, not what's inside the building.

"They think that they're flying into either the open sky or a tree," she said. "It just depends on what's in front of the window, what they're seeing, so then they think they're flying straight through and they actually hit."

In her research, Boates found CollidEscape, a U.S.-based company that developed a translucent tape designed to reduce the number of bird strikes while "preserving our view of the outdoors."

"It's a tape that goes on the outside of a window, and it's designed specifically for reducing bird strikes. They say it has reduced bird strikes by up to 80 per cent," she said.

The centre has since partnered with CollidEscape to sell the "High Performance BirdTape" in Nova Scotia.

Cobequid Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre
Cobequid Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre

Boates said the tape has a 10-year stick warranty and should be applied on the outside of the window in vertical stripes, five to 10 centimetres apart.

"It breaks up the reflection on the outside of the glass so that the birds don't think that they're flying into open air," she said.

She said when it's first applied, you'll be able to see it but over time you won't notice it.

Boates said the centre is selling the tape at cost for $20 per roll. A single roll is 12 metres long and can be shipped anywhere in Canada.

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