A City of Glass Towers and a Hazard for Migratory Birds

From all-creatures.org
Animal Rights Articles

Moo-ving people toward compassionate living

| Visit our Home Page |

A City of Glass Towers and a Hazard for Migratory Birds

[Ed. Note: For more information, visit Protect Millions of Migratory Birds.]

From Karen Dawn, DawnWatch, September 15

Today's New York Times (Thursday, September 15) includes an article by Lisa Foderaro titled, "A City of Glass Towers and a Hazard for Migratory Birds." While the piece focuses on New York it covers an issue common to many big cities and even discusses how other cities are dealing with the problem. It delivers sad information but gives us hope in learning that the issue is receiving serious attention -- this New York Times article being a welcome example of that attention.

We read of volunteers from the Audubon society spending their mornings picking up dead birds and we learn:

New York is a major stopover for migratory birds on the Atlantic flyway, and an estimated 90,000 birds are killed by flying into buildings in New York City each year, the Audubon group says. Often, they strike the lower levels of glass facades after foraging for food in nearby parks. Some ornithologists and conservationists say such crashes are the second-leading cause of death for migrating birds, after habitat loss, with estimates of the national toll ranging up to a billion a year.

We learn that in San Francisco (naturally) the "San Francisco Planning Commission adopted bird-safety standards for new buildings in July, and this month that city’s Board of Supervisors will vote on making it law."

We read about some of the fixes available: "Opaque or translucent films, decals, dot patterns, shades, mesh screens — even nets." Be we are told that "they have been a tough sell in the high-design world."

There is an interesting quote from Glenn Phillips, executive director of New York City Audubon: "I hope there will come a time when putting up an all-glass building is like wearing a fur coat. Not that no one will do it, but maybe they’ll think twice about it."

Foderaro shares information about superbly successful efforts that have been made by some buildings. But we read about resistance from the Metropolitan Museum -- that's even though "volunteers have found 20 to 120 dead birds a year near the museum’s vertical expanse of glass facing west into Central Park."

You'll find the full article on line at http://tinyurl.com/3o2hb3v

It opens the door for letters appreciative of the New York Times coverage -- positive feedback for animal friendly coverage will always encourage more of it. You might like to focus on the specific issue being discussed or use it as a jump off point for a wider look at our dealings with our fellow earthlings.

The New York Times takes letters at letters@nytimes.com

Always include your name, address, and daytime telephone number when sending a letter to the editor.

DawnWatch is an animal advocacy media watch that looks at animal issues in the media and facilitates one-click responses to the relevant media outlets. You can learn more about it, and sign up for alerts at DawnWatch. You may forward or reprint DawnWatch alerts only if you do so unedited -- leave DawnWatch in the title and include this parenthesized tag line.