British Columbia

More birds are flying into windows in Metro Vancouver, wildlife rescue says

The Wildlife Rescue Association of B.C. suggests increased urbanization and wildfires could be factors for the increase in injured birds.

Program director Linda Bakker suggests wildfires have displaced rural and migrating birds

One of the hundreds of injured songbirds that staff members at the Wildlife Rescue Association of B.C. have been caring for recently. (Tina Lovgreen/CBC)

The Wildlife Rescue Association of B.C. says it is seeing unprecedented numbers of injured birds that have flown into windows.

In the month of September, the Burnaby rescue treated 460 injured songbirds, which it says is about 100 more than it treated in the same time period last year.

The injured birds have mostly been found in Vancouver and Burnaby, with a considerable number also coming from Surrey.

Linda Bakker, the program director of the rescue, said one factor could be increased urbanization due to more development.

However, she also suggested the recent wildfires could have played a role.

"A lot of the animals are displaced or seeking other routes, because they're migrating right now, so they're probably avoiding areas of wildfires and coming here," Bakker explained. 
A bird recovering at Wildlife Rescue Association of B.C. (Tina Lovgreen/CBC)

Bakker said homeowners can reduce the number of birds striking their windows by covering the glass, or using decals on the outside of their windows to minimize glare.

If you find an injured bird, the Wildlife Rescue Association of B.C. suggests carefully putting it in a shoe box and placing it in a quiet room for 30 minutes. After that, rescuers say to take the box outside and open the lid to see if the bird will fly away. If the bird still cannot fly, call the wildlife rescue. 

With files from Tina Lovgreen and CBC News Vancouver at 6.