Wingin' It - Arlington Municipal Airport Newsletter Wingin' It - Issue 10 - June 2017 - Page 4

Arlington Municipal Airport Newsletter Vegetation Management for Bird Control In 2016, the Airport experienced three bird strikes between April and May involving the Upland Sandpiper, a migratory bird that is typically prevalent in the area during spring and early summer months. Last year, DFW International Airport began an initiative to decrease the number of bird strikes by identifying plant species growing close to runways and taxiways, which represent a food source for birds. A targeted herbicide application was applied to remove those plants, and DFW has seen a reduction in the number of birds. Pigeons, doves, and European Starlings represent the greatest threat to aircraft on this Airport. The Operations’ staff uses a number of techniques to control and disburse birds that are in close proximity to the runway and taxiways. The Airport will add a vegetation management process to reduce populations of nuisance birds. The first step is to identify plant species that provide a food source for these species of birds. Once identified, a licensed specialist will apply a targeted herbicide application. Bird count estimates will be taken to determine the effectiveness of the procedure, and the results will be validated by a wildlife biologist. Just a reminder - If you see a flock settling in the Airport Operations Area, radio the ATCT, or Airport Operations at 817-459-5571, and the birds will be dispersed. If a strike does occur, call Airport Operations immediately, and submit a report to the FAA online at: https://www.faa.gov/airports/airport_safety/wildlife/approach/. If possible, the remains of the bird (technically referred to as “snarge”) is collected, and the Airport also submits a report to the FAA Wildlife Strike Database. If the type of bird can’t be determined onsite, a sample will be sent to the Smithsonian Institute for identification. Data collected is used to help develop better methods of preventing bird strikes. 4