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Local birds singing the praises of Foyle Arena Staff

20 December 2017

Local eco-warriors have come to the rescue at the Foyle Arena after it emerged that the modern reflective finish of the building was posing a serious problem for our feathered friends.

Confused by the clear glass structure, which mirrors the surrounding woodland, the birds were crashing into the windows believing they were heading for the safety of the trees, causing great distress to staff and visitors.

But after staff at the Arena and members of the public consulted Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Biodiversity officer, Julie Hannaway, a simple solution was soon found.

“We had to find a fast solution that wouldn’t detract from the look of the building, but would also ensure the safety of the local wildlife,” she explained. “The large glass windows at the pool side allow visitors to the Foyle Arena to enjoy the beautiful scenery of the park but unfortunately the birds only see the mirror image of the trees and sky.”

Some simple stickers were the answer, as Julie revealed. “With the help of staff at the Arena we strategically placed silhouette stickers of birds of prey to the outside of the large windows to help break the reflection.”

Donna Philson from the Foyle Arena said the staff are delighted that they have had no further casualties since adopting the approach.

“The transfers on the windows have had a massive impact so far. It was so distressing seeing the birds’ imprints on the glass windows and up to six birds were dying per day.

“Since the stickers have gone up there have been zero fatalities - a 100% success rate so far. The staff here are delighted. Members of the public have been asking about the bird stickers and when we explain what they are some tell us they have had the same problems at home and are grateful when they learn what they can do to prevent it happening.”

The stickers have proved to be extremely effective and no birds have flown into the windows since the stickers were put on the glass seven weeks ago.