The firm of Curry & Kerlinger, LLC (who serve as “consultants to the wind power industry on birds and other wildlife issues”) has an interesting set of stats about the various ways that birds are killed each year:
Deaths annually from (descending ranking):
- Glass Windows: 100 to 900+ million
- Electrical Transmission lines: “up to 174 million”
- House Cats: 100 million
- Hunting: 100+ million
- Autos/Trucks: 50 to 100 million
- Agriculture: 67 million
- Communications Towers: 4 to 10 million
- Oil and Gas Extraction: 1 to 2 million
- Power line electrocutions: >1,000
- Land Development; Stock Tanks; Logging and Strip Mining; Commercial Fishing: Unknown
The stats suggest that before we worry about birds hitting towers, we should focus on the real bird killers: All of the others above the telecom listing. For about every 109 bird deaths, 108 are attributable to non-telecom reasons.
It’s a perspective thing…just like RF safety.