[BCNnet] [beebzz] Tree tubes and bird mortality (no sightings)

Jody jody.z at comcast.net
Tue Apr 10 11:27:15 CDT 2012

In hearing about this, I am wondering about the way newer furnaces have open pvc pipes on the side of the house. Any word on that with birds?

On Apr 10, 2012, at 9:46 AM, BFisher928 at aol.com wrote:

> Illinois birders and bird conservationists.
> BCN has been actively working with northeastern Illinois forest preserve districts to solve the problem of birds getting trapped in fishing line disposal tubes at district fishing lakes (Cook County has made good progress, DuPage is fixing it now). But the messages below from the Wisconsin birding listserv are an indicator that tree tubes and uncapped fence posts can also be tempting and lethal traps for cavity nesters.
> Sorry for the cross postings, but I thought this information would be useful to the birding and bird conservation community.
> One thought occurred to me as I read these posts: Stuffing a plastic bag into the top of tree tubes would be a quick way to prevent a bird from getting down into the tubes. Presumably there are other, better preventions?
> Regards
> Bob Fisher
> Downers Grove
> DuPage County
> From: "Tom Schultz" <trschultz at centurytel.net>
> Subject: [wisb] A word of warning - Tree tubes
> Date: Mon, 9 Apr 2012 11:24:17 -0500
> I just received a phone call from a friend who recently experienced a 
> tragedy with a plastic tree tube. (These translucent plastic tubes are 
> frequently used to protect young sapling trees from deer damage.) They were 
> checking their tubes to look for budding leaves and unfortunately discovered 
> a couple of dead bluebirds inside. Fortunately a third bluebird inside was 
> still alive, and it flew away when the tube was raised. All three birds 
> appeared to be females, due to duller plumages. The tube was apparently 
> located not far from a bluebird box, and they have often seen bluebirds 
> using the tubes as perches.
> I had not heard previously of this potential danger to birds, but I thought 
> it might be a good idea to put a warning out. A good solution would 
> probably be to put netting or something similar over the tops of these tubes 
> to prevent birds from entering.
> Tom Schultz
> Green Lake Co. 
> ------------------------------
> Date: Mon, 9 Apr 2012 12:54:58 -0500 (GMT-05:00)
> From: Sharon Reilly <reillyhi at earthlink.net>
> Subject: [wisb] Re: A word of warning - Tree tubes
> Unfortunately tubes have been a well documented hazard to the small birds that are cavity nester. But obviously this threat is not well known to the general public. Birds can get inside the tube but cannot get back out. Just think of all those open-ended fence posts in your neighborhood (no cap on them). Almost guaranteed to have a dead bird inside. 
> I have personal experience with open-ended metal fence posts being death traps. And since learning about this problem have tried over the years to educate even the conservation organizations I worked for about capping all fence posts! Not only do they attract birds but they can also be a suitable site for unwanted species like bees and wasps. 
> Here's a story to show you the unfortunate SCALE of this preventable loss - from the ABC on the mining stakes in Nevada. http://www.abcbirds.org/newsandreports/releases/111122.html
> But every citizen should be aware of similar TUBES like tree protectors, fence posts. Anything with a small opening can be attractive to a cavity nester. If it is smooth on the inside the bird cannot climb out and if it is too small the bird cannot open its wings; it is a death trap and impossible for the bird to escape. 
> You can save the lives of thousands of birds by passing this bit of information on to your friends and neighbors. If you need to use a tube be sure it is large enough in diameter for a bird to fly out, or put a mesh screening on the inside. I know it's a lot of trouble for some people, but it is the only way to make them safe for birds. 
> Sharon 
> Baraboo, Sauk County
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