How to keep birds from flying into windows

11 Effective Ways On How To Keep Birds From Flying Into Your Windows

Last Updated: June 1, 2023By

Did you know that nearly one billion birds die from window collisions in the United States each year? As a home or office owner, it’s essential to take action to protect our feathered friends while also maintaining the aesthetics of our spaces.

In this blog post, we’ll explore 11 effective ways to keep birds from flying into your windows without compromising on style or functionality.

Say goodbye to heart-wrenching thuds against your glass and hello to safe and serene surroundings for both you and wildlife.

Key Takeaways

  • Nearly one billion birds die due to window collisions in the United States each year.
  • Reflections, territorial defense, and attraction to light are the primary reasons for birds hitting windows.
  • 11 effective ways to prevent bird strikes on windows include hanging strings or ribbons, installing screens or netting, using motion-activated sprinklers or alarms, providing bird feeders and baths, using visual markers or anti-reflective film and installing window shades or blinds.
  • Understanding why birds hit windows is crucial in preventing this problem while creating a safe environment that also keeps our feathered friends protected.

Understanding Why Birds Hit Windows

Birds hit windows due to reflections and transparency, territorial defense, and their attraction to light.

1. Reflections and Transparency

Reflections and transparency are two primary reasons why birds frequently collide with windows. Glass often reflects the surrounding environment, such as trees and vegetation, which can be confusing for birds.

They may perceive these reflections as an extension of their habitat or a potential source of food, leading them to fly directly into windows. Additionally, the transparent nature of glass makes it difficult for birds to recognize its presence.

To make matters worse, certain weather conditions can exacerbate reflections on window surfaces. For example, during sunrise or sunset when light levels change rapidly or in overcast situations where natural lighting creates less contrast between the glass and its surroundings, it becomes even more challenging for birds to differentiate between real environments and misleading reflections.

2. Territorial Defense

Territorial defense is another major factor that contributes to birds flying into windows. Birds, particularly during the breeding season, can become highly territorial and protective of their nesting sites.

When a bird sees its reflection in a window, it may perceive it as an intruder or rival attempting to take over its territory.

For instance, small birds like robins or cardinals are known for fiercely defending their territories and are prone to hitting windows while engaging in battle with their reflections.

To prevent such incidents caused by territorial defense instincts, homeowners should consider using visual markers or one-way transparent films on their windows to reduce reflections that trigger these aggressive behaviors.

3. Attraction to Light

Many bird species are drawn to bright lights, particularly at night, which ultimately increases the likelihood of them flying into windows. Urban areas with abundant artificial lighting can prove especially problematic for nocturnal avian such as warblers and other migratory birds during their seasonal treks.

To mitigate this issue, homeowners can take simple yet effective steps like turning off indoor lighting and closing curtains after dark. This will not only save energy but also play a significant role in reducing glass-window fatalities among our feathery friends.

Additionally, installing anti-reflective window film or using screens on the exterior side of windows can help decrease glare while simultaneously deterring birds from approaching the glass due to reflections.

11 Effective Ways To Prevent Birds From Hitting Windows

Here are 11 proven ways to prevent birds from hitting your windows: hang strings or ribbons, install window screens, use bird netting, motion-activated sprinklers or alarms, bird feeders and baths, bird houses or nest boxes, install window shades or blinds, close curtains or blinds, use visual markers on windows, apply anti-reflective window film, and use one-way transparent films.

1. Hang Strings Or Ribbons

Hanging cords, strings, or ribbons in front of windows is one of the most popular and cost-effective ways to prevent bird strikes. This method works by creating a barrier that disrupts reflections on windows.

Birds will see the movement from the hanging objects and avoid flying towards them, reducing the risk of collisions. The Acopian BirdSaversTM is an example of a product designed to help birds see windows using hanging strings.

These colorful strands can be hung from eaves or other structures near windows, making them highly visible to birds. It’s essential to hang them close together with no more than two inches between each strand for maximum effectiveness.

2. Install Window Screens

One effective way to prevent bird collisions with windows is by installing screens or nets. These barriers serve as a physical deterrent that birds can see, preventing them from flying directly into the glass.

Mosquito screens can work well as a bird deterrent, but it’s essential to ensure that they cover the entire surface of the window and are installed on the outside.

According to American Bird Conservancy, an estimated one billion birds die every year in North America due to window strikes.

3. Use Bird Netting

Bird netting is an effective way to prevent birds from hitting windows. By attaching the netting at the bottom of your window with hooks or weights, you create a trampoline-like effect that cushions any bird that may fly into it.

This technique works especially well for larger windows where small birds like sparrows and finches might not see the glass until it’s too late.

According to important facts about preventing bird-window collisions, using bird netting as a solution has been found effective in creating a physical barrier between birds and windows.

The net provides a soft landing spot for unsuspecting birds that would otherwise crash into your window panes. Additionally, this method is cost-effective compared to other options like installing anti-reflective films on all your home’s windows or buying motion-activated sprinklers.

4. Motion-Activated Sprinklers or Alarms

Motion-activated sprinklers or alarms are one of the more high-tech solutions to the problem of birds hitting windows. These devices use sensors to detect when a bird is approaching and then release a spray of water or emit a loud noise that scares it away.

While motion-activated sprinklers or alarms can be effective in preventing window strikes, they may not be suitable for all situations. For example, they require a source of water and electricity, which may not always be available.

Additionally, some birds may become accustomed to the noise or water over time and begin ignoring it.

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5. Bird Feeders and Baths

Placing bird feeders and baths within close proximity to windows can be an effective solution in preventing birds from crashing into them. When placed within three feet of a window, these feeding stations can divert a bird’s flight path, reducing the chances of fatal collisions.

For optimal effectiveness, it is recommended that feeders be placed no more than 18 inches away from windows. Not only do these feeding stations provide birds with essential food and water sources, but they also serve as a distraction from the reflective surfaces of glass windows.

In summary, placing bird feeders and baths near your home’s windows offers multiple benefits – both for you and our feathered friends! Not only does it allow you to enjoy watching backyard birds up close through the window panes, but it also provides much-needed nourishment while simultaneously keeping them safe from accidental injuries caused by hitting glass surfaces.

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6. Bird Houses or Nest Boxes

Providing bird houses or nest boxes can be a great way to help prevent birds from hitting your windows. By encouraging birds to build their nests in safe and protected locations, you can keep them away from dangerous areas near your windows.

There are many different types of bird houses and nest boxes available on the market today. Some of the most popular designs include bluebird houses, wren houses, and martin houses.

When choosing a bird house or nest box for your yard, it is important to consider factors such as location, size, and material. For example, some species prefer open-fronted boxes while others require more enclosed spaces.

7. Install Window Shades Or Blinds

Installing window shades or blinds is an effective way to prevent birds from hitting windows. By closing the shades or pulling down the blinds, you create a barrier that makes it hard for birds to see through the glass.

This obstructs their flight path and reduces collisions with your windows.

Besides blocking off sightlines, window treatments also help reduce reflections on glass surfaces that attract territorial birds. The use of roller shades, cellular shades or curtains can make your windows bird-safe while still allowing light into your home.

8. Close Curtains Or Blinds

One effective way to prevent birds from flying into your windows is by closing curtains or blinds. This solution works particularly well at night when interior lighting attracts birds seeking a place to rest.

By keeping the room dark, you eliminate the reflection in the glass and reduce the risk of bird strikes. Additionally, it’s essential to close curtains or blinds during migration seasons when large flocks of birds may be passing through your area.

According to American Bird Conservancy, billions of birds die each year due to window collisions, making this issue a severe threat to bird populations worldwide.

9. Use Visual Markers On Windows

One effective way to prevent birds from flying into windows is by using visual markers on the outside of the glass. These markers can take different forms, such as decals, stickers, sun catchers, and even sticky notes.

The goal is to make the window visible to birds by creating patterns or shapes that are highly visible to them.

Research has shown that window markers can reduce bird strikes significantly when used correctly. For instance, a study conducted by the American Bird Conservancy found that applying a hawk silhouette decal reduced collisions by 84% among small songbirds in an office building.

10. Apply Anti-Reflective Window Film

Anti-reflective window film is a great solution to prevent birds from hitting windows. This specialized film reduces glare and visibility by controlling the amount of light that passes through the glass.

Additionally, anti-reflective window films are designed to increase transparency at night while preventing reflections during the day.

One such product, Solyx Bird Safety Film, comes in various patterns and covers the entire surface of the window. Its unique design helps birds recognize that they cannot fly through it, making it highly visible to them even at long distances.

11. Use One-way Transparent Films

One highly effective way to prevent birds from hitting your windows is by using one-way transparent films. These films are perfect for those who want an unobstructed view while keeping the birds safe.

They work by allowing people to see out clearly, but they create a reflective surface on the exterior that makes it difficult for birds to see in.

Using one-way transparent films not only helps prevent window strikes, but it also provides privacy during daylight hours. As mentioned earlier, installing these types of films can help you maintain a clear view of the outdoors without worrying about privacy because anyone on the outside can’t look inside due to reflected light.

Conclusion On How To Keep Birds From Flying Into Windows

In conclusion, preventing birds from flying into windows is crucial for the safety of both the birds and your windows. By understanding why birds hit windows and implementing some of the 11 effective strategies outlined in this article such as installing screens or netting, using visual markers or anti-reflective film, and providing bird feeders or baths, you can create a bird-friendly environment that also keeps your home safe.


1. Why do birds fly into windows?

Birds may fly into windows due to confusion caused by reflections or transparency, mistaking them for open spaces or territorial aggression against their own reflections.

2. What are some examples of effective bird deterrents for windows?

Examples of effective bird deterrents include window films, decals, netting, bird feeders and placing objects such as wind chimes near the window that will alert birds to its presence.

3. Is it necessary to completely cover my windows with decals or film to keep birds away?

It is not necessary to completely cover your windows in order to deter birds from flying into them. Placing visual markers every few inches on the surface can effectively break up reflections and prevent collisions without obstructing views entirely.

4. How can I keep birds away from specific areas such as a garden or outdoor dining area?

To keep birds out of specific areas you may want consider adding physical barriers like netting around gardens or using noise devices like motion activated speakers which emit sounds that repel certain types of avian species but do not harm them physically in any way. Additionally – try removing any food sources (including water) within immediate vicinity so they aren’t attracted towards space unintentionally!

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