After assessing your home for identifying any bird window risk, FLAP Canada recommends you start by treating the priority, high-risk windows first.

Do-it-yourself (DIY) bird-deterrent techniques

Be creative. Treat your glass like a canvas.

  • Cover the outside of windows with a contrasting pattern of any shape
  • Keep any visual markers no more than 10 cm apart vertically or 5 cm horizontally. To help make your marker pattern less visible to people, while perhaps helping to keep smaller birds safe, such as hummingbirds and kinglets, a window must have no reflective openings larger than 5 x 5 cm (2 x 2 inches).
  • Apply to the outside surface of your window to achieve the best results from any bird deterrent.

Other examples of DIY bird-deterrent techniques

  • Draw patterns on your windows with a bar of soap or highlighter pen. You may need to repeat this after every rainfall.
  • Attach strips of white tape on the outside of your window that follows the specified spacing
  • Install external shutters and leave slats in open position no greater than the specified spacing
  • Hang columns of parachute cord spaced no more than 10 cm apart for the full width of your window 
Northern Goshawk Collides with Window

Northern Goshawk Collides with Window

Window products for purchase

(proven effective by supplier as a bird-collision deterrent)

Glass window replacement

(if replacing windows is an option, the following glass products have been proven bird-safe by supplier)

Additional Ways to Keep Birds Safe

  • Where to place birdfeeders and birdbaths

    To help reduce the risk of collisions, place birdfeeders and/or birdbaths less than a half metre from your windows. Over this short distance, birds cannot build up enough momentum to injure themselves should they hit a window. The closer to your window, the better it is for the birds and your viewing.

  • Where to place your houseplants

    Move houseplants away from your windows and install blinds to be drawn during the day with slats turned open.

  • Plant Native Plants

    Plant native trees, shrubs and flowering plants in your yard to provide food, shelter and nesting areas for birds. Visit the North American Native Plant Society (nanps.org) for tips.

  • Leave window screens where they are…in front of windows

    Exterior screens in front of windows help reduce the risk of birds colliding with windows by muting the reflective qualities of glass. This is only effective for those windows with screens. All uncovered glass remains a threat.

  • Refrain from cleaning your windows

    Bird collisions increase dramatically when windows are sparkly clean. Even minute dust particles on windows help reduce the reflective qualities of glass.

  • What to do when you find an injured bird

    Should a bird hit your window, gently place it inside an unwaxed paper bag or cardboard box firmly secured. Place it in a quiet location away from people and pets. Do not give the bird food or water. Contact your local wildlife rehabilitator for further instructions, or visit flap.org for more information.

  • What to do when you find a baby bird

    Visit helpbabybirds.ca for more information.

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