Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Good News for All But a Few Birds

I was glad to see this Kevin Drum link to a Bloomberg article about the danger of wind turbines to birds. The patter among some environmentalists is that they are responsible for massive bird kills.

Estimates from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Wildlife Society don't support that.

What's amazing to me is the high number of fatalities caused by birds flying into buildings and windows. When I was working in downtown Chicago, there were mornings when I'd find 5 or 6 dead or stunned birds outside just one building. They saw nothing but blue sky and clouds in front of them, not realizing that they were flying into a glass building, and the sky was behind them.

Not many birds, it seems, die of old age.


Kris May said...

Looks like there may be about 30 per 10,000 fatalities that could be dying of old age. Which is more than wind turbines but less than communication towers. But what about dogs?

Chip said...

Interesting. I have seen estimates for fatalities caused by cats as high as 30 million and even higher. That's way above the 10,600,000 quoted here.

Bob Miller said...

Kris: If Ripley is any indication, dogs seem mostly interested in birds that are already dead.

Chip: Thanks for the input! I'm not sure how they come up with these estimates, of course.