Avian Collision Team (ACT)

Black-throated Green Warbler that died from a window collision
Black-throated Green Warbler

Project Overview

Between 300 million–900 million birds die every year from collisions with glass. While much attention is given to window strikes at tall skyscrapers in the city, residences and single-family houses also contribute significantly to the problem.

Birds can be confused by and fly into window reflections on any glass surface, including normal houses. While 1-3 story residences kill fewer birds on a per building basis than glassy, ultra-modern office parks, single-family houses cause up 80-90% of total window strikes simply because there are so many more of them than any other building type.

How You Can Help

You can help us better understand this problem by monitoring collisions at your residence from April 12–June 2. All you need to do is check the areas near your home's windows for dead or injured birds (daily checks are ideal, but not required). Count the number of dead or injured birds you see and report your data to us.

It's important to report your data each day you complete a check, even on days with no detected strikes—hopefully there are lots of those!

Create an Account

This project uses Anecdata, a simple data collection site designed by the MDI Biological Laboratory to encourage citizen science contributions. You'll need an Anecdata account in order to participate.

  1. If you don't already have an account, click the "Register" button in the top-right to create one.
  2. Once you've logged in, click on the "Join Project" button on the project homepage.
  3. To report your data, click the "Add an Observation" button and fill out the requested data fields.

Join & Submit Data >

Reporting Your Data

The first time you submit an observation, you'll need to provide details about your home and windows. To do so, simply answer the drop-down menu questions on the type of building you live in, rough size of the windows, and so on. Then fill out the requested data fields to report your first observation. 

  • Please Note: You only need to fill out the information about your home and windows once. We will save the data about the building you are surveying.

You should submit an observation with the number of strikes found (normally "0") and the weather for each day you complete a check. When you start submitting data, a project administrator will set up a "hotspot" for your residence to make it easy for you to add subsequent observations—they will be in touch with you once you join the project.

Making Bird-Friendly Changes

If you decide to install bird-friendly products on your windows such as specialized tape or screens, please do so either before or after the data collection period (not during). While we encourage anyone and everyone to make their windows safer for birds, doing this in the middle of the primary data collection period will make it impossible to analyze data from your building.

More about making windows safer for birds >