Chickadee

Here at Henbogle we have lots of big windows overlooking the back yard.  We love the windows, since we love the backyard and with a south western exposure, they fill this old cape with light and warmth.

The only drawback is that the beloved birds we feed sometimes strike the windows.  The worst case was a gorgeous wood thrush the first spring we were here.  He or she died instantly, neck broken.  I buried this beautiful bird amidst my tulips.  We’ve had a few other losses, a goldfinch this winter died, but when we are home, we do our best to save these poor birds.

This winter, a male cardinal flew into the window on a snowy day.  I rushed out and picked him up and brought him inside in a small box to stay warm while he recovered.  Yesterday, a chickadee hit the kitchen window.  Dan rushed out to collect it, and held the bird until it recovered enough to fly off.

We’ve tried hawk silhouettes, holographic ribbon, windchimes near the windows, even highlighter scribbled on the outside, to no avail.  We’ve moved the feeders close to the house, which does seem to help, but still they occur.  I’ve read that you can stretch nearly invisible deer-fencing type mesh over the windows to prevent this, but I sure wish we could find another solution, as that doesn’t appeal.  I would be afraid a bird would become entangled and we’d arrive home to find a poor goldfinch dead from fright and exhaustion, tangled in the mesh.  Does anyone have a solution to this problem?

At least yesterday’s chickadee survived!

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4 Responses to “Chickadee”

  1. Leigh Says:

    We’ve had this problem with mourning doves and cardinals. Like you, we tried to mark the windows, but to no avail. My guess is that they see the reflection of the sky in the windows, and think they can navigate anything on the windows like they do branches on a tree. I do hope someone does have a solution to this, as I would like to prevent it from happening here too.

  2. nancybond Says:

    They are such darlings. We’ve had similar experiences here on our patio doors. Fortunately, one side is screened, of course, but I have no good suggestions for a remedy, but will check back to see if others do.

  3. Christine B. Says:

    I guess my windows are so dirty it just doesn’t happen much. We’ve only had strikes on the south side windows for some reason. I’ve noticed it’s almost always newly fledged birds, esp. dark eyed juncos. I have heard of moving the feeders AWAY from windows (more than twenty feet) but obviously there is other information out there as you have heard of moving them closer. I bet the audoban website has some good tips though: they’re all about wild birds.

    Christine in Alaska

  4. jeannie Says:

    Dan, remember the picture from when we were little where Kathy is holding a bird? I do. And Buddy and I have the same problem with our sun room. And then I pray that our cats don’t get them.

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