A special type of glass that can prevent birds from flying into it has been employed in a lookout tower off the northeast coast of England. The special bird-stopping glass was inspired by the orb-weaver spider’s web and is easily visible to birds, but basically invisible to humans.
The Lookout Tower at Lindisfarne has installed the special glass to protect the hundreds of species that flock to the island in an effort to avert the dangers of birds flying into glass, the Daily Mail reports.
In nature, the orb-weaver spider’s web reflects UV light. The birds can see the reflection and do not fly through and destroy the web. The protective glass coating uses the same method to help birds see the glass. The glass has a patterned, UV-reflective coating, which is applied as a web of lines onto the surface of the glass. Birds in flight can see the reflecting glass and avoid the dangerous building, the Mail reports.
It is estimated that more than 300 million birds die each year from collisions into glass. The creators of the glass hope that their development will reduce the number of bird casualties.