[opendtv] More info on migratory bird collisions with towers

  • From: "Manfredi, Albert E" <albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 13 Nov 2006 13:59:46 -0500

For the avian-minded in the group:


is the initial result of the FCC inquiry on migratory bird collisions
with communications towers.

The capsule summary of initial findings is:

1. Tall towers cause more collisions than short towers.

2. But the FCC asks whether many short towers would not represent a
greater risk than few tall ones. Not to mention siting issues.

3. Guy wires cause more collisions than self-supporting towers.

4. Steady red lights cause more collisions than unlit towers. Evidently,
the steady lights attract certain birds. Not good.

5. Either blinking red incandescent or red strobe lights reduce
collisions, however the FAA does not permit use of these blinking red
lights without also having steady red lights. So it looks like red
lighting is bad news.

6. Medium intensity white strobe lights are allowed without any steady
lights to go along, so these appear to be the best option as of now.

7. Comment is requested on how to make guy wires more visible to birds.

8. Comment is requested on ways to migrate to medium intensity white
strobes, assuming that's the right answer, e.g. in replacing burned out
red lights.

9. The FCC asks whether they should encourage tower co-location. (Yes,
yes, I find myself being very concerned about the welfare of migratory

If I were a migratory bird, perhaps I'd prefer some scheme where the
strobes light in a sequence that shows the total height of the tower.
E.g., repeated sequential lighting, from bottom to top, to give the idea
that this isn't just one small obstacle suspended in the air.

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