Bird-Friendly Window Film Installed at the Centre for Urban Ecology

August 3, 2016

“Can you give CPR to a bird?”

The group of Humber College Nursing students had gone out to enjoy the beautiful May weather, but now they hovered near a fallen ball of orange feathers waiting to see if their health care skills could help. 

Jimmy Vincent, Coordinator of Education, Camps, and Community Outreach at the Humber Arboretum, assured the group that in this case no drastic measures were necessary. The Baltimore Oriole who had mistaken the reflection of trees for the real thing had only been stunned when it flew into a window at the Centre for Urban Ecology, and would just a need a few quiet minutes to recuperate. 

But sadly, many window strikes don’t end nearly as well. It’s been estimated that anywhere between one million and one billion birds are killed each year in North America alone due to collisions with buildings. Those numbers come from Fatal Light Awareness Program (FLAP) Canada, a Toronto-based charity dedicated to protecting birds in built environments. 

The Humber Arboretum is thrilled to announce that bird-friendly window film has now been installed on key sections of the Centre for Urban Ecology, which should help drastically reduce or even eliminate future window strikes. Bird-friendly film uses a repeating pattern to visually break up the glass so birds can recognize it for the barrier – and danger – that it is.

The Humber Arboretum is a year-round home and a migratory stopover for a wide variety of bird species, ranging from songbirds to shorebirds to raptors. When migratory birds travel through North America they tend to travel along four major paths, called “flyways”. The City of Toronto is in a truly special spot, as this is where the Mississippi and Atlantic Flyways converge.

So come by the Humber Arboretum to do some bird watching and to have a look at our brand new life-saving dots. And remember, window strikes aren’t just a concern for skyscrapers and big glass boxes like the CUE – they take place at homes, cottages, and commercial buildings of all sizes. To learn how you can make your glass bird-friendly, visit