Dr. Sheppard, Bird Collision Expert to Visit

Dr. Christine Sheppard, one of the world’s foremost authorities on bird collisions, and the Bird Collisions Campaign Manager for American Bird Conservancy, will speak on –

Title: Why Birds Collide with Glass and How We Can Stop Them” Where: Beth El Synagogue in St. Louis Park

Date: April 18th

Time: 6:30 pm

The presentation will discuss how these methods can be used at the U. S. Bank Stadium.

Abstract: Birds are important parts of the biosphere, yet hundreds of millions are killed by colliding with glass in the US every year.  Birds collide with glass on structures of every size, from shacks to skyscrapers, in urban, suburban and rural area. Advances in technology are increasing use of glass curtain walls and other large glass features, increasing the rate of mortality.

Our current understanding of avian visual ecology clarifies reasons for collisions and provides a basis for creation of effective solutions.  Hazards to birds in the built environment are easy to recognize. Many currently available strategies for reducing bird mortality overlap with strategies deployed to control heat and light or promote security in new construction. Strategies for retrofitting existing structures are becoming more available. Legislation requiring bird-friendly design is becoming more common.

Biography:  Dr. Sheppard earned her B.A. and Ph.D. at Cornell.   Her first job was at the Bronx Zoo, where she started as an intern, and ended as Curator of Birds.   Zoos deal not only with issues of their buildings causing mortality of wild birds by collisions with glass exhibit walls, windows and handrails, they bring bird collision problems inside.  In 2007, Dr. Sheppard joined the board of the Bird-safe Glass Foundation as science advisor.  She conducts basic research into the effectiveness of different patterns in preventing bird collisions.  In 2009, she moved to the American Bird Conservancy as Collisions Program Manager and has recently published a revised, second edition of her Bird-friendly Building Design.  She has created AIA continuing education classes on Bird-friendly Design, helped create San Francisco’s Standards for Bird-safe Buildings and was part of the team that developed USGBC LEED Pilot Credit 55: Reducing Bird Mortality.


This is the second of three presentations to be given as part of the Stadium Retrofit Committee’s effort to convince the MSFA to retrofit the U. S. Bank Stadium to make it bird safe. A $5 donation will be requested at the door to defray costs.

The Stadium Retrofit Committee is a coalition of the Audubon Chapter of Minneapolis (ACM), Minnesota Citizens for the Protection of Migratory Birds (MCPMB) and the Friends of Roberts Bird Sanctuary (FRBS) as well as other bird loving concerned citizens, who are very disturbed by the mortality occurring at the U. S. Bank Stadium. Consequently the Retrofit Committee has embarked on an effort to gather information that will lead to viable recommendations to the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority to retrofit the stadium to make it Bird Friendly. In order to collect pertinent data on Bird-Glass collisions, the Retrofit Committee has invited two national bird collision experts to visit the Twin Cities in March and April to provide information to a Retrofit Committee Panel that after compiling pertinent facts about Bird-Glass Collisions will make recommendations to the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority (MSFA) on retrofitting the stadium to make it Bird Friendly.

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