How Maryland Companies can Prepare for Bird-Safe Glass Legislation
Recently, Howard County in Maryland voted to pass
CB11-2020, an act that will require new construction projects to submit documentation that design meets bird-friendly standards from the global Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building certification program. Birds fly into the glass because windows are “worse than invisible,” (Cornell University, 2017). This is because glass can reflect the nearby surroundings, like trees. The bird will think they are flying into something that is safe. According to a 2014 study published in The Condor: Ornithological Applications, between 365 and 988 million birds are killed from colliding with buildings. With these new bird-safe glass laws, it’s important that construction companies understand how this is going to impact their future projects. Read more about bird-safe glass below!
What is Bird-Safe Glass?
Bird-safe glass refers to a style of exterior glass that creates “noise”. This noise helps alert the bird of the glass. Therefore, the bird is less likely to collide into the glass. The “noise” on the glass to alert the birds can refer to a few different things. Traditionally, this means the exterior glass has a design or other special addition to help the bird see the glass. There are another type of bird-safe glass that involves ultraviolet (UV) coatings that is invisible to the human eye, but visible to birds.
How Can I Make Sure My Current Glass is Bird-Safe?
Although Maryland law is not requiring buildings to be retrofitted with bird-safe glass, you may be interested in knowing how to protect your current or past construction projects. However,
- Adding a screen or netting at least 3 inches in front of your exterior windows will “catch” birds before they hit windows
- Placing a design on your window will help birds see your exterior windows better and make collisions less likely
What to do if a bird strikes your window
According to the Humane Society of the United States, there are recommended steps you should take if you notice a bird has collided with your window. First, gently cover and catch the bird with a towel. Then, put the bird in a paper bag or cardboard box with airholes. If possible, keep the bird in a quiet, dark area. During this time, do not touch the bird. If the bird looks like it has recovered, take the box or bag outside and open it. Step back and see if the bird flies away. If the bird does not fly away or does not seem to recover, you should contact your local wildlife rehabilitator.
What about glass on future office buildings?
If you want to make sure your glass is bird-safe, you can contact Kensington Glass Arts (KGa). We service businesses in the Mid-Atlantic area. KGa will help you work through any bird-safe regulations. Although KGa primarily specializes in commercial interior glazing, KGa is always happy to help clients in Maryland explore options for their future construction projects.
About Kensington Glass Arts
Kensington Glass Arts is a high-end commercial glazier. We offer tempered and laminated glass Fabrication, Installation, and Commercial Glass Services. Further, we can help in every step of your commercial construction, even at the design level. If you’re interested in working with Kensington Glass Arts, you can contact us now.