Archives for 2019

Mar
14
Birds In Real Danger, Saskatoon (B.I.R.D.S.)

Reprinted from the Saskatoon Nature Society Newsletter March 2019:

BIRDS grew out of a communal desire to protect our feathered friends, and became
a partnership between the Saskatoon Nature Society, Wild Birds Unlimited,
Saskatchewan Light Pollution Abatement Committee, and Living Sky Wildlife
Rehabilitation.


We are all passionate about birds and recognize the threats to birds from flying into
glass structures. Over 699 million birds are killed by glass in North America each
year according to the FLAP Canada.


BIRDS has been actively advocating for bird safety since its inception last year. We
have a 6 foot banner that attracts attention at community events and encourages
conversation and awareness of the problem and possible solutions. It is on display
at Beaver Creek when not otherwise in use.


Jan Shadick gave a well-attended presentation about bird collisions at Gardenscape
last year. She will give another presentation this year. All partners have attended
City meetings and advocated for implementation of bird-friendly building
guidelines.


Progress has been positive! The City of Saskatoon, the University, and MVA have
taken steps to implement some of the ideas and suggestions from the Director of
FLAP (Michael Mesure).


1. The University has added “Dots” to windows on new overhead walkways to
reduce bird collisions.
2. MVA has placed “dots” on their windows at Beaver Creek, and has plans to place
them on their downtown office building. They have also included a more rigorous
assessment of buildings for bird-friendly design during their review process.
3. The City of Saskatoon has begun to develop Bird-Friendly Building Guidelines in
accordance with recommendations from FLAP. After consulting with LSWR, FLAP
and other partners, they are publishing a Healthy Yards pamphlet with tips for
homeowners to help protect birds from collisions with glass. It will be ready for
visitors to Gardenscape and will later be distributed as an electric bill insert
throughout the city.


Never in our wildest dreams did we believe that we could make such a significant
difference in community attitudes within such a short time span.

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