The first thing that researchers have been doing is to find out how birds see things in an effort to understand why they collide with moving aircraft. A group of researchers have been trying to determine how birds see. As an example, Canadian geese can see further out on either side of their heads, but more importantly they can see ultraviolet light which is NOT visible to humans.
Each year aircraft and birds collide causing significant damage to aircraft and resulting in expensive aircraft repairs. In the LiveScience article the authors note that a research wildlife biologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture by the name of Bradley Blackwell has led a research time to learn how birds see their world.
The team focused on Canadian geese who are the most responsible offenders for bird strikes to aircraft. Using what is known about the visual system of Canadian geese learned by flying small remote control aircraft over some Canadian geese they found the geese reacted quicker to pulsing lights and discovered that they can see ultraviolet light (which humans can not see).
The researchers have recommended that ultraviolet/violet lights on aircraft to alarm geese and encourage them to get out of the way of the aircraft.
If you have any experience with bird strikes to your aircraft we would love to hear from you.
In the meantime keep your wings straight and level Hersch!
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