WestJet flight lands safely after bird hits engine

A WestJet flight landed safely yesterday after a bird flew into the engine.

Bird strike the 61st of the year

A WestJet flight landed safely Thursday after a bird flew into the engine.

Bird strikes continue to be an on-going concern for planes at the Calgary International Airport.

Nick Czernkovich, a licensed commercial pilot and CBC meteorologist, said he has missed geese in the air by as little as three metres.

"They had come up behind a line of trees so we didn't see the birds until we were already airborne and that can make it pretty difficult because your options are pretty limited," said the King Air pilot. 

Terry Thompson, the airport’s director of environmental services, said workers encourage birds to move on in the springtime when the animals are looking for a nesting location.

Workers check the airport grounds daily and they use a variety of methods to encourage the birds to keep on flying, said Thompson.

"Propane cannon and pyrotechnics [are used] and they will use lethal methods if they deem it appropriate."

Thursday’s collison was the 61st bird strike of the year at Calgary International Airport, said Thompson.