13 May 2013

Mid-May Sunday Window-strikes in Eastern Omaha

With the unusual weather this spring in the Missouri River valley, the instances of known window-strikes has also shown some differences in comparison to previous seasons.

The lesser extent changed dramatically on the morning of May 12th. Departure on the bicycle survey started at 6 a.m., and within a quarter-hour, a new site for a bird death was noted. There was a dead Orange-crowned Warbler at the entryway on the south side of the D.J. Sokol Arena, at the Creighton University campus.

This was a preventable death.

Staff with facilities management had been asked to keep the entryway blinds closed, but in the past week or ten days, the blinds were opened. Despite my concerns, their office was not called, in order to provide an attempt to further consider and evaluate the situation. The sordid result was obvious as vividly expressed by the warbler fatality.

An extent of too-much time was required to document the carnage at the CenturyLink Center Omaha. The first fatality observed was an Orange-crowned Warbler near the north end of the west side. A bit further, a Blackpoll Warbler was beneath a public bench, dead.

Beneath the walkway connecting the center to the motel across the street, were two carcasses. Both the Clay-colored Sparrow and another Blackpoll Warbler had struck its south side. Though there have been many strikes at the Qwest/CenturyLink Center, these two were among the very few associated with this structure at the site.

The most significant finding of the early morning was the carcass of a male Yellow Warbler. It was not along the building facade, but was obvious in a trash receptacle. Someone had picked up it from nearby and "thrown it away."

The person responsible for this act is not known, but by throwing birds "away" or otherwise removing them from the place of their occurrence, is a known action that has been previously undertaken by "hired security" at this building and by employees at other buildings in downtown Omaha. It is done to remove any evidence of a bird strike, and to indicate a lesser number of instances of bird death or disabilities at a particular place.

Obviously it is meant to convey that the structure is not harmful ... the adage "out of sight, out of mind" applies.

CenturyLink Center on morning of May 12th. The left picture is of two fatalities beneath the walkway, and the other is the Yellow Warbler in the trash receptacle.

The eastern side of the Zorinsky Federal Center seems to be problematic this year. A third instance of a strike was a disabled Ovenbird -- with its mohawk coloration obvious" on the east side of the building, just a relative few feet from the south end. There was another fatality a few days ago, but it was not recorded as the carcass was smashed to a point of oblivion, and was so destroyed as to decide to leave it lay. The remains were still there today.

Disabled Ovenbird at the Zorinsky Federal Center.

There have been 24 known window-strikes in the eastern Omaha vicinity, thus far this year. This includes three surprising instances at the Zesto Building in north downtown. There had previously been only one record for this place.