Saturday, September 22, 2007

Morgan Mail Facility covers windows

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/22/nyregion/22birds.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

The windows at the Morgan mail facility at 28th Street and 10th Avenue in Manhattan were not really windows overlooking the park. However, the windows overlooking Chelsea Park on 28th Street reflected the trees in the park. Birds ran into those windows at a high rate. For birds it was one of the deadliest places in Manhattan. The rates are apparently greatest during the migration seasons. We speculate that that is because the birds in migration do not really know their surroundings.

New York City Audubon volunteers counted the fatalities, and the post office agreed to coat the windows. Now, those windows are not reflective. We thank the post office. The Times story was on the first page of the B section below the fold. We thank the Times for the coverage.

The glass was the exterior facade of the building, but the glass did not act as windows. No one was looking out. One thing this illustrates is the popularity of glass facades today. Another is that it is easier to coat the windows with a non-reflective, black, vinyl film when no one's vision or light is diminished.

From 2002 through 2006, the New York City Audubon volunteers, led by Nicole Delacretaz, had counted 862 collisions. The three most common species were dark-eyed junco (junco hyemalis - http://www.birds.cornell.edu/BOW/DEJU/), white throated sparrows (onotrichia albicollis - http://www.birds.cornell.edu/BOW/WHTSPA/) and ruby-crowned kinglets (regulus calendula - http://www.birds.cornell.edu/AllAboutBirds/BirdGuide/Ruby-crowned_Kinglet.html), according to the Times story. In other words, most of the birds that fly into the windows of buildings are little birds.

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