Expert shares exactly where to place your bird feeder to prevent window collisions

The placement of your feeder may save a bird's life – this is where to hang it, according to an expert

Birds Perching On A Feeder
(Image credit: Fiona McAllister Photography)

Alongside bringing joy to your garden, birds are an essential part of the wider ecosystem – so it is only natural to want to protect these important creatures. 

If you're an animal lover or you're planning on creating a wildlife garden, bird feeders are an effective way of inviting these creatures into your outdoor space. However, according to one expert, your bird feeder may be doing more harm than good. 

According to Marc Parnell, author of the book series, The Birding Pro's Field Guides, you should keep your feeder at a distance of 25 feet or more from your window – to prevent fatal window collisions. 

Approximately 600 million birds a year die following an impact in the US alone –  253 million of those collisions are with residential properties. Here's how Marc suggests combatting that figure. 

Where to place your bird feeder to prevent window collisions 

Birds Perching On A Feeder

(Image credit: Rebecca Allchurch / EyeEm)

Marc recommends placing the feeder '25 feet or more from all nearby windows or immediately next to any windows' to lower the risk of impact. 

'The primary concern with feeders situated in the danger zone (about three to 25 feet away from windows) is that birds can generate enough momentum to make a window strike fatal,' he says. This is becasue the bird does not have 'sufficient time to avoid the obstacle if quickly fleeing the feeder station' if the bird is flying from a predator or seeking shelter. 

Robin on a bird feeder

(Image credit: Robin Paul Derbyshire / EyeEm)

When making your garden bird-friendly, Marc suggests that taking care of these creatures extends beyond the conventional feeder and bird bath ideas. He also urges you to invest in UV-reflective decals for your window. These will alert birds to the presence of a potential hazard without making any serious commitment. 

'These decals are often available in garden-friendly silhouettes, such as butterflies, flowers, leaves, or even birds,' Marc explains. 

Glass Alert Distraction Markers| $23.95 on Amazon

Glass Alert Distraction Markers| $23.95 on Amazon
These distraction markers will encourage birds to stay clear of your windows without tainting your interior design scheme. We particularly love how this minimalistic shape is discreet enough not to overpower your windows but large enough to keep creatures safe. 

These simple (yet effective) ideas will bird-proof your plot, so you can can continue to attract birds to your garden and enjoy their company for many seasons to come.

Megan Slack

Megan is the News and Trends Editor at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Gardeningetc, Livingetc, and Real Homes. As the News Editor, she often focuses on emerging microtrends, sleep and wellbeing stories, and celebrity-focused pieces. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.