Rockford Area Birds Are Smashing Into Windows Like Crazy
I know it's not just a Rockford phenomenon, and that it's happening all over the state, but way too many Illinois birds are not going make it long enough to migrate south this winter.
In my nearly twenty years of hosting the WROK Morning Show, I've seen well over a dozen birds go on to meet their maker after flying headlong into our studio window. The problem got so bad that our alert and compassionate co-worker Priscilla walked in recently and added this sticker to our studio window in hopes of cutting the death rate:
Annoyed at first because her sticker obscures my primo view of a satellite dish, I've come to appreciate it because we've gone all spring and this far into the summer without a single bird fatality. Plus, on those mornings when I can't quite get my eyes fully opened, it looks like the station is on a beach if you catch the proper angle.
Joe Dredge, who has openly admitted his fear and loathing of birds, has no sticker on his window. He has a bird feeder. Make of that what you will.
It's not just our studio window that has sent Illinois birds to the great beyond. I've talked to several co-workers and a some neighbors that have had, or currently are having the same problem.
BookClubChicago.org recently published a piece on how Chicago's McCormick Place is a death zone for birds, with nearly 200 birds dying from crashing into the gigantic building's windows every single night.
The data shows birds are attracted to lit windows — which could result in deadly collisions, according to the researchers. In turn, shutting off the lights at McCormick Place and other Downtown buildings on high-risk nights would save birds.
WildBirdScoop.com says that "One billion birds are killed throughout North America alone each year by hitting windows."
So what can you do about it at your office or home? You can put up a sticker like Priscilla did with our studio. The experts at the University of Illinois Extension say that one big reason birds will hit your window is that during certain conditions, the glass reflects the sky, and they don't realize there's a window there until it's way too late. A sticker or decal can help prevent that.
This nice British guy has a pretty good tip for this problem, too (and he only takes about 90 seconds to explain it):