Duke University is adding colors and patterns to the windows at one of the buildings on its Durham, N.C., campus to reduce the death toll from birds crashing into the windows.
WRAL-TV reports that the Fitzpatrick Center for Interdisciplinary Engineering, Medicine and Applied Sciences (FCIEMAS) at Duke's Pratt School of Engineering has been designed with many windows that admit daylight into the building.
That has helped the building earn a LEED rating for energy efficiency, but it also has caused birds, who see through the glass but don't see the glass itself, to crash into the windows.
The university notes that is situated on the Atlantic Flyway, a path followed by many migratory birds.
"Through informal censuses, and thanks to the collaboration of many Duke fellows, we have concluded that window strikes are an issue for birds at Duke," the university says.
Researcher Natalia Ocampo-Penuela says dozens of birds have been dying each year after hitting the windows of the Fitzpatrick Center. The university began tracking bird deaths on campus and found that the Fitzpatrick building accounted for 72 percent of the collisions on campus, The Duke Chronicle reports.
Officials believe that by adding film with colors and dotted patterns to the Fitzpatrick windows, window collisions and bird deaths will decline significantly.