Keep Birds From Flying into Your Windows

I’m sure you have wondered why would a bird fly into a window at full speed? Are they attacking the house, or upset at something they see inside?

Usually, it’s not something they see inside the house or office building that has their attention. Birds will seldom have any real interest in the inside of the house. More often they can’t even see the interior of the building. What gets their attention is the reflection of the outside world on the window, the clouds and the reflections of other birds. This obviously will happen more often for windows that have a reflective coating or some type of tinting to keep the sun out, but often it will happen with ordinary nontinted windows, more-so if the inside is dark and it’s bright daylight outside.

So given that the reflection is the problem, what are some simple solutions?

Most solutions to keeping birds from crashing into windows focus on changing the appearance of the window to keep it from reflecting the outside environment. For the case of windows that don’t have a solar tinting the window a possible solution might be as simple as drawing the shades. This will be more effective if the shades have a light colored backing, making them more visible to the outside.

Other possible solutions involve the outside appearance of the windows, once again focussing on reducing reflections the birds see on the window. Often the easiest thing to do is to put screens on the windows that attract the birds. Not only does this reduce the reflections seen on the window, but the window is cushioned so the birds may not be injured if they were to fly into it.

Of course, screens just won’t work in some cases, for example on a large window like a picture window, so some other alternative is needed. There are some commercial available solutions, for example Droll Yankees makes a Window Warning Web. This looks like a large artificial web that is placed over the window resembling a spider web. Since it’s a web it does a reasonable job of maintaining the view out the window. Many birds will avoid a web entanglement.

For a home made approach, you can do basically the same thing with simple ribbon or yarn, criss-crossing it across the window to create a simulated web. Once again with some care this can be done without blocking the view too much.

If you are only seeing this problem during a short season each year, for example in the nesting season, you may want to use a simple coating on the window. Some simple to remove coloring like soap or shoe polish will be quite visible to the birds, and will come off fairly easily once the high risk period is over.

Some people like attach decals to the window, and there are some that are made to resemble owls and other creatures, but many folks don’t care for how these look.

Then there is the lazy man’s solution Simply leave the windows dirty enough that they are no longer reflective.

Finally, the safest thing to do while keeping the view out the window might just be to move the birds. If you have a birdhouse or bird feeder positioned near the window, it might be best to move your bird feeder or house further from the window, or to one side so the birds will not be so likely to be flying near the window at all.