According to Dawn Keller of Flint Creek Wildlife Rehabilitation
located on Chicago's Northerly Island & Barrington Illinois.
The main things people can do to minimize human's detrimental impacts on raptors/birds and all wildlife:
- Rodenticide – Never use rodenticides to control rats and mice. Only use non-poisonous methods (snap traps or glue traps) to kill mice and rats or use live traps. Besides automobiles, rodenticide is the single largest human-related reason we see raptors come into our center.
- Window collisions – Use window films to reduce window collisions on high-strike windows. We recommend CollidEscape as opposed to hawk silhouettes or other stickers since the window is covered as opposed to leaving large gaps between silhouettes. CollideEscape also has the advantage of not significantly impairing the view from inside the building/home. The Chicago Park District installed CollidEscape on the north and east sides of the Northerly Island Terminal building in 2007 which successfully reduced window collisions by over 80%. Additionally, dim evening lights during migration and move plants away from windows. Although many people think of window strikes as a songbird issue, Cooper's Hawks often hit windows in pursuit of songbirds and migratory nocturnal raptors such as Northern Saw-whet Owls and Long-eared Owls are also prone to window strikes while migrating through areas densely populated with buildings.
- Netting – Do not use holiday lights that are on netting (to drape over shrubs), bird netting to protect berry-producing shrubs and trees from hungry birds or netting containing lawn seed. All of these products are dangerous and result in raptor entanglements. The holiday netting and the bird netting for shrubs are the most dangerous for Cooper's Hawks who become entangled as they chase small birds into the shrubs.
- Soccer Nets – Soccer nets, badminton nets and volleyball nets should all be dropped or turned over at night to avoid owl entanglements.
- Fishing line - Clean up fishing line when fishing and never use fishing line to hang holiday decorations or other objects from trees. We've admitted raptors who became entangled in fishing line in the lake and we've also admitted a raptor who hung from her wing tip all night after becoming entangled is fishing line used to hang plastic Easter eggs from a tree.
- Lead – Use stainless shot instead of lead shot. Raptors, particularly scavengers like vultures and eagles, ingest lead shot after eating wounded animals and become ill and/or die from lead poisoning.
- Trapping – Do not set glue traps or snap traps outside of a building. If the traps are in your garage, do not leave your garage door open.
- If you hit a raptor with your vehicle, stop and call a federally-licensed wildlife rehabilitator for help. If possible, stay with the raptor (at a respectful distance so as not to stress it) until help arrives. If you cannot stay with the raptor, record the closest mile marker or mailbox address and note the exact location of the bird (what side of the street, for example) so that the bird can be found and helped. Your state's Department of Natural Resources should maintain a list of all licensed rehabilitators. Only use persons on that list that carry the appropriate permits.