People put up fences for a variety of reasons. Some put them up for protection, others to keep livestock in or wildlife out. Even though fences have a purpose, they are harmful to the environment. Birds and other types of wildlife can be harmed by fences.
For instance, the materials of the fence may appear invisible to creatures. If they can’t see it, they won’t take measures to avoid it, which can lead to injury or death if the bird or animal strikes it hard enough.
Fences vs. Birds
Fences can pose several different problems for birds. Birds of prey that fly low to the ground can run into trouble in several different ways.
A few of them include:
- Electrocution – Birds that have long wing spans can hit electrified wire, destroying feathers and burning flesh. Electrical wire is one of the most dangerous of all fencing materials.
- Wildfires – Fences are practically invisible to birds and animals. During a wildfire, they are especially dangerous because they are easily hidden by the smoke and can trap animals, which can prevent them from escaping flames and smoke.
- Collisions – Low flying birds may not be able to see wire fences and fly right into them. If they do notice them, it may be too late for them to correct their flight path and catch a wing or a foot on the top.
- Tangling – Many times when birds collide with fences, they can become entangled in the wire. As they struggle to free themselves, they can lose important flight feathers and actually cut or tear their flesh.
- Prevents Accurate Migration – Fences that have bright lights along the perimeter can confuse birds that migrate over long distances, causing them to veer off of their natural migration routes.The hazards posed by fences are numerous. It is important to consider all of the possible options when installing a new fence or repairing an existing one. Find out what kind of birds and animals are native to your area and plan your fencing accordingly. From the fencing materials used to the installation techniques, being mindful of the hazards will be what truly protects you and your property.
- Eliminating the Problem
There are several things you can do to protect the birds and wildlife in your area, while having the security you desire. There are several different types of fencing materials you can choose from that will offer you what you need as well as help the wildlife.
- Attach Ribbons – Attaching ribbons and small baubles to the fence at various intervals can help alert both birds and animals that the fence is there, reducing the chances of collision and entanglement.
- Proper Maintenance – Make sure that any fencing is properly maintained. Broken wires can impale or scratch birds causing infection and death.
- No Higher than Necessary – Keep the height of your fences at a minimum. Fences that are too high create unnecessary obstructions for birds, especially those that fly low to the ground when searching for food.
- Add a Brush Line – Add brush and various forms of vegetation along the fence line. This helps birds identify where obstacles are so they can avoid them as they search for food and potential nesting areas.
- Turn off Lights When They Aren’t Needed – Many fences have lights placed at regular intervals along their tops. It is important to turn the lights off when they are not used or not needed. Keeping the lights off allows the birds to see the stars that guide their natural flight patterns.
- Know the Phone Number for Animal Rescue – Know the phone number for animal rescue or the Department of Natural Resources. Having the number easily accessible can save a bird or animals’ life if they would happen to be seriously injured from colliding with or becoming entangled in your fence.
By taking the necessary precautions, you can prevent unnecessary harm and injury to birds and other animals. Choosing the right materials and installation techniques are also important because it will determine what type of risks animals and birds are subjected to.
Taking the time to make wise choices can create a virtual backyard paradise, making it easy for both you and the neighborhood wildlife can get along peacefully with each living their lives to the fullest.