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Birds--General/cowbird hurling itself at our window


There is a cowbird flying directly into our window. It bashes it's little beak and then after recovering does it again.

Why is this happening?

Cowbirds and many other birds are territorial and when they establish territories in the spring they become aggressive and chase off intruders. Unfortunately, they don't distinguish between their own reflection in a window (or car mirror) and try to chase that off. The solution to the problem is to eliminate the reflection. Misting the outside of the window with a very weak detergent or soda solution will eliminate the reflection but will also impair visibility for you. Awnings, eave extensions, and window screens will eliminate all reflection and stop the collision problem. Hanging ornaments such as wind chimes, wind socks, and potted plants also help. The behavior will stop when nesting begins.


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Roger Lederer


Any and all questions about WILD birds - not caged, domestic or poultry. Can answer questions about identification, taxonomy, behavior, courtship, plumage, flight, or anything else. Wild birds only, please.


Taught ornithology (the study of birds) at the university level for 30 years. Have written five books on birds, published 30 scientific articles, write a blog on birds, have the website, lectured to hundreds of groups on birds,and have traveled to 90 countries studying birds.

A variety of ornithological and conservation organizations.

Real Simple Magazine, Enterprise-Record, and several ornithological and ecological journals.

PhD in Zoology with emphasis in ornithology.

Awards and Honors
Professional Achievement Award, Jack Rawlins Chair of Environmental Literach.

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