|Birds often die after mistakenly eating plastic.|
(U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service photo)
- Up to 1 billion birds are estimated to die each year in the U.S. and Canada after hitting windows. Help birds detect windows by installing screens or breaking up the reflection with film, paint, string, or other visual cues.
- Keep your cats indoors or put them on a leash. Cats kill more than 2.6 billion birds in the U.S. and Canada each year, the top human-caused reason for bird deaths except for habitat loss.
- Add trees and plants to your lawn or garden that help feed birds or give them a place to nest or rest during migration.
- Avoid pesticides, especially neonicotinoids, which are lethal to birds. Glyphosate (found in Roundup) can also be toxic to wildlife. Birds can be exposed to pesticides directly or indirectly through the seeds or insects they consume.
- Drink coffee certified as "Bird-Friendly". That means the coffee plants were grown in the shade, which means the coffee farms didn't cut down the forests that birds and other wildlife depend on for shelter. More than 42 species of North American songbirds winter in coffee plantations, so drinking shade-grown coffee could affect bird populations in the U.S.
- Reduce single-use plastic usage and recycle what you do use. Birds often eat plastic, thinking it's food, which can kill them.
- Help scientists with your bird observations. Monitoring bird populations is essential to protect them, but tracking bird populations is a huge challenge for scientists. So, many have crowdsourced the job with projects such as eBird, Project FeederWatch, a Christmas Bird Count, or a Breeding Bird Survey.