Birds worth protecting…

Scarlet tanagers,

“I share this photo every spring, of a Scarlet Tanager pair that I found on the ground by a neighbor’s glass door. It was spring, and he must have been chasing her (she’s the one with yellow plumage). They both hit the glass and died instantly.

ABC | FLAP Canada | more 

“I thought about the long journey these stunning neotropical migrants had made from their wintering grounds in South America, and all the challenges they’d overcome to return to their breeding grounds here in upstate NY. It just seemed heartbreaking and senseless for them to die this way.

I posed them next to each other for this photo to pay tribute. In my heart I promised them I would use their story to educate myself and others. I thought, maybe in this way they won’t have died in vain.

“It’s estimated that a billion birds die at our glass windows every year. Making windows safer for birds is a simple thing we can each do to help them. With nearly 40% of bird species in decline worldwide, even just saving a few lives makes a difference!

Do you have a glass window on your house where you’ve found an injured or dead bird before? That’s a good sign it could happen again. Migration and nesting time will soon be here. Birds are returning to their territories at and near your home, as well as moving through to points north.

American Bird Conservancy (ABC) has some great resources. Here’s a recent post they did on the issue, which links to solutions:

At home we use ABC tape, and my daughter makes decals. She prints out a coloring page of a bird, colors it, cuts it out and tapes it to the window. It doesn’t have to be fancy! Just something that gives a clue to birds there’s a surface there.

If a bird hits glass at your home or business, and lies stunned on the ground, there are two main dangers: freezing, if it’s cold out, or being killed by a cat or other animal. If either is a risk, pick it up gently, put it in a lightly covered box, in a quiet room, and listen. When you hear it moving around, then release it outside. If it’s not better in 1-2 hrs (which it usually is), look for a wildlife rehabilitator in your area, to bring it to. Web site, lists rehabbers all over the world…

Feel free to share, with credit. And please share other solutions you have found successful, in this facebook thread.”

— Melissa Groo ( | photo & discussion on facebook)


ABC | FLAP Canada | more