Have we really come to this question so soon? My buddy Harry O asked me what I thought of the idea of allowing airports to kill birds that might imperil air traffic… I’m sure you know what my response was! Suddenly, it feels like the run-up to the invasion of Iraq with birds playing the role of terrorists and WMD at the same time. Does human nature really impel us to kill others to feel safe ourselves?
Comments like that don’t surprise me in the least. Not after what I heard on the radio right after it happened. It was a local radio talk show host who broke into his programming to announce the accident. He said it appears to have been caused by a flock of geese. He than made the dumb comment of “See folks, this is because these birds are protected and they put their welfare over the safety of people”, or something to that effect.
I sat there stunned and then got very angry. If I wasn’t at work I was going to call him and give him an earful.
There are a lot of people out there who think only of human life and not the lives of all creatures. Yes, people should be first when it comes to airline safety, but shooting birds is not a solution. It totally frosts me to hear some people and what little respect they have for wild life.
There are plenty of humane methods that airports can (and do) use to scare away birds from the area. I remember reading about birds of prey being used and found an excellent article on this webpage about that and other methods:
London City Airport – Environment Page
(scroll down about 2/3rd down the page to “Bird Control”
and another website:
Falconry at Spanish airports
I did a post on my blog this morning where I got the statistics for fatalities caused by drunk driver and suggested maybe they should be rounded up and humanely euthanized and then given to food pantries as that is what they did here when they “reduced” the geese. That way we can say we did a good deed….or maybe I am being too harsh…
These, and other, methods have been tried at LaGuardia, to little effect. The problem is that the airport was built smack-dab in the middle of a major shorebird wintering ground.
I’m sure I’m being naive, but, surely, there must be some way to bird-proof jet engines from from ingesting birds. They can wipe out every bird near LaGuardia, but bird hits will still be a problem the world over. It’s hard to believe that all of the technology and know-how out there can’t come up with a solution. We can squirrel-proof our bird feeders, no?
Having just begun jousting with my backyard tree rodents, OChums, I’m not sure we can truly squirrel-proof feeders!
Love the comments all. Thanks!
OK, Mike: bad example…
was hearing on some local talk radio about some bad press on birds and how they have been protected too much and was part of the reason this happened! I so wanted to call them up to tell them off! Although, it was a shame that a situation like this happened from a flock of birds!
Jet engines are tested with dead chickens which are hurled into the engines and the aftereffects noted. This was clearly a once in a 100 million chance that both engines were affected…don’t be bothered by all
the hysteria on the networks.
i hate birds. i hope they all die