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King County, Washington

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Alisa Brodkowitz
Alisa Brodkowitz
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Seattle Airport's Efforts To Prevent Bird Strikes

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Our own Seattle airport, Sea-Tac, was recently featured for the work that it does to prevent bird strikes. The airport employs a full time wild-life biologist (Steve Osmek) and spends about $250,000 a year on bird-removal operations. Seattle uses a laser with a scope on it to shine a green light near birds.

Osmek uses a laser with a scope on it to shine a green light near birds. The light flashing near the birds mimics a predator stalking them, Osmek says, and usually causes them to take flight.

Sea-Tac also uses an advanced avian tracking radar system to track birds within six miles of the airport and up to 3,000 feet. There are three such radar terminals at Sea-Tac. The radar is manufactured by Accipiter Radar Technologies, a Sicom company. Later this year, O’Hare, JFK and Dallas Fort-Worth airports expect to install the avian tracking radar.