I cannot read the Chinese but this looks like a classic case of how NOT to design a noise barrier - clear glass and extensive green area on one side so that disturbed or frightened birds instinctively try to dive in to cover.
This should definately be reported to Government so that remedial measures can be taken - ideally making it opaque or failing this applying conspicous shapes to the glass to make it more visible.
Mike Leven Author: lbarry Time: 21/12/2006 12:37 Subject: Re: Noise Barrier
Sorry to note so many fatal cases regarding birds hitting on the noise barrier. I think the design of noise barrier should be changed. A raptor figure with an illuminating material should be adhered on the surface of noise barrier so that birds will not fly too close to it. The designer of HyD should take note in order to prevent from recurrence. However, I always feel that the engineers working in the government are very robust. They are not so considerate. Development is at their first priority while sustainability of culture, building, environment, social lives is put aside. They can destroy Star Pier, Queen Pier and can sacrifice natural animals and plants.
What a cruel government !
Author: lalan Time: 31/12/2006 22:23
2more birds had been found
2006年12月31日 white-rumped minia 白腰文鳥
2006年12月31日 japanese white-eye 暗綠繡眼鳥 x2 Author: 深藍-Owen Time: 31/12/2006 22:31
Plants can soften the appearance of noise barriers and improve the streetscape, Highways Department Chief Engineer Chow Chun-wah says. Special panels will be put on trial on two road sections in Kwun Tong and Tsuen Wan where noise-barrier retrofitting will begin in 2007.
Noise barriers and enclosures are often installed to protect residents from traffic noise. While they mitigate noise, they also have a visual impact. In this regard, a study was launched early this year to explore the greening and aesthetic design of noise barriers.
To alert our feathered friends, falcon stickers (right) have been put on the transparent noise barrier along Kam Tin Bypass to make the panel visible to birds.
On other greening measures, such as concrete panels with climbers, the engineering expert said the public prefer transparent panels since concrete ones may block views and light.
Apart from the acoustic, aesthetic and greening aspects, engineers must also take into account the safety of our feathered friends, especially when designing noise barriers in areas with high bird density or in rural areas.
Barriers made visible
"With the advice of the Agriculture, Fisheries & Conservation Department, we have put falcon stickers on a section of transparent noise barriers along Kam Tin Bypass since June, to make the barriers visible to birds, following reports that bird carcasses were found," Mr Chow said.
Local and overseas experiences have shown that falcon stickers can cut the number of birds who fly blindly into the transparent barriers. The AFCD's initial assessment found the trial on Kam Tin Bypass worked well, with only one dead bird found in the two-month observation period.
In the same period, 20 bird carcasses were found along the section where no falcon stickers were posted.
To confirm the stickers' effectiveness, falcon stickers will be put on another section of transparent noise barrier along Kam Tin Bypass in early 2007.
Mr Chow noted so far there are no dead-bird reports for other roads fitted with transparent noise barriers.Author: Webcreeper Time: 31/12/2006 23:25
Apart from the noise mitigation requirement for the noise barrier, the designer shall also consider, inter alia, :-
(i) Cost effectiveness
(ii) Safety and fire resistance
... ... (ix) Bird collision
3.9 Bird collision
There are reported cases where birds collide onto the transparent noise barrier panels causing bird mortality. As the panels are either transparent which appears invisible to birds or reflective that mirrors the facing landscape, birds are unable to recognize them as physical barriers. Having considered the bird collision problem, the Director of Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation (DAFC) recommended that transparent materials should be avoided as far as possible in the design of noise barrier in areas with high bird density or for roads that cut across rural areas.
To address the bird collision problem, designers should consider bird collision measures during the design stage. It has been a standard practice in Hong Kong to provide transparent noise barrier panels with either tinted materials, embedded opaque stripes or superimposed patterns of thin opaque stripes. However, recent experience suggested that application of tinted materials alone may not be adequate in preventing bird collision and further mitigation measures are needed. In this regard, our department and DAFC are investigating several alternative measures to address the problem. Designers may take note of the investigation and seek DAFC’s advice where necessary. Author: lalan Time: 1/01/2007 22:13
what the hell???????? Author: lalan Time: 8/01/2007 22:21
2007年1月8日 japanese white-eye 暗綠繡眼鳥 :x Author: lalan Time: 16/01/2007 13:14
I think I haven't made myself clear. From your report, I think there were still many bird tragedies. Would anyone advise us what we can/may do for this issue? Your photo records are already a relevent evidence to prove that the bird stickers are INEFFECITVE or not as effective as expected. Author: lalan Time: 26/09/2009 22:49
As any experienced bird ringer will tell you, there are certain species which become active very early in the morning, often at the first hint of daylight, which if trapped are frequently among the earliest birds trapped on a given morning. In Hong Kong notable examples are chats, thrushes and Lanceolated Warbler, and I'm saddened, but not surprised that these are well represented among the birds affected by the noise barriers. The problem is that these birds move around in such low light levels that black bird stickers are probably effectively invisible at that time and will not resolve the problem. Author: lalan Time: 30/09/2009 23:32
thank you paul for answer why the black bird stickers didnt work as we hope
most noise barrier are face on south and west, that may be the reason the birds can't saw it ever the sunrise
as I konw some of the noise barrier were using straight line to protect the birds, do you think it work? Author: lalan Time: 9/10/2009 20:43
The Kwun Tong Bypass running along Laguna Park is also fitted with noise barriers recently,
with silhouettes of raptors on the transparent panels.
The Bypass is next to a park, and a highway runs underneath.
It is not easy to monitor if birds are killed.
Author: lalan Time: 10/10/2009 22:29
Original posted by BWA at 10/10/2009 15:36
The Kwun Tong Bypass running along Laguna Park is also fitted with noise barriers r ...
Design of noise barriers to change in bid to save birds
Officials plan to modify glass panes on a Yuen Long road
Highways officials plan to modify the glass pane design of noise barriers on a Yuen Long road after at least 50 birds hit the barriers and died over the past three years.
The officials are working with conservation officers to devise a better design to frighten birds away from the barriers. Design and installation could be completed in a few months.
One option is to replace the black hawk silhouette stuck onto the glass panes since late last year with stickers of opaque stripes or colourful circles to minimise the transparent-glass surface.
The birds, mostly smaller species and some rarely sighted, have been found lying dead or semi-conscious at the bottom of the barrier, which was built along Shap Pat Heung Road in 2006 to cope with increasing traffic brought by property development in the area.
They had apparently collided with the three- to six-metre-tall transparent glass barriers, which stretch intermittently along the road for a few hundred metres to shield villages from traffic noise. In some sections, there are trees immediately behind the barriers.
Fifty-three birds from 25 species have fallen prey to the barriers so far, leaving 50 dead and three injured. The last collision happened about a week ago.
Alan Lam Ngo-lun, a dedicated birdwatcher who passes the noise barrier almost every day and has compiled a detailed list of the victims, said he suspected that the transparent glass barriers, which looked invisible to birds, were to blame.
"The actual death toll could be far higher than I have recorded, as some dead birds could have been removed by street cleaners before they were found," Lam said.
Smaller birds, as little as 11cm in length, were found to be particularly prone to hitting the barrier, as they usually flew closer to the ground. But bigger birds, as long as 40cm, were also found dead.
The most vulnerable species were resident birds that lived nearby, such as the Japanese white-eye, a common and tiny songbird species that accounted for one-fifth of the toll. About 10 per cent of the victims were Eurasian tree sparrows.
Rarely sighted migratory bird species including the Siberian blue robin were also on the death list.
Lam said it was difficult to explain why some birds hit the glass and what circumstances were more conducive to collision, because systematic research into the problem was lacking.
He said such collisions had also become more common in urban areas, with more and more buildings being covered with reflective glass panes that might distort birds' view of the world.
According to the National Audubon Society in the United States, there are about one billion bird deaths resulting from collisions with windows and buildings each year in the United States.
Jackie Yip Yin, a nature conservation officer from the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department, said it had asked the Highways Department to consider remedial measures, after reading Lam's report.
She said most birds could have hit the glass early in the morning or when visibility was reduced.
Highways Department chief engineer Tse Chun-tat said it was still studying the best options to minimise bird collisions, but replacing the transparent barriers with non-transparent ones might not be financially viable or welcomed by residents.
"We also have to consider the visual impact on the residents, as a non-transparent barrier might block their view, " he said. "This is a balance we have to strike."
He said it might take some time to design the new stickers, and the department would monitor their effectiveness before considering whether to extend the new techniques to other noise barriers.