Template for the Development of an Airport Wildlife Management Plan


15. Monitoring

Monitoring is a critically important wildlife management tool. Monitoring provides information to assist the Wildlife Management Officer (WMO) in adjusting the program in response to shifts in hazard and risk. It also provides a tool to demonstrate, to regulators and others what the airport has been doing to minimize risks, and to maximize safety for its staff and the traveling public. This can be particularly important should a litigious situation arise.

15.1 Daily Wildlife Management Log

The first step in a good monitoring program is good record-keeping. The most efficient manner to collate daily wildlife logs is using software specifically designed for the task. These programs can be purchased from several vendors (see Section K.3 of the Wildlife Control Procedures Manual). This airport will be purchasing a software program to record (for all target species listed in this report) the standard data that are suggested by Transport Canada in the sample field form of the Manual. This will include: date, start and finish, numbers and species, control activity, details of lethal control, results/evaluation, location of wildlife, weather, personnel, and other pertinent information.

15.2 Monthly Summary

At the end of each month, a written summary will be provided within the Wildlife Management Log that discusses any environmental changes or unusual conditions that may have led (or might lead) to unusual wildlife hazard situations or changes in risk assessment.

This summary will also provide a discussion of wildlife interactions to help focus the need for future changes to the AWMP. For example, success in managing one species that leads to a sharp increase in another species should be noted, even if the evidence is largely circumstantial and anecdotal. The "best judgement" of experienced WMOs on the ground will be given careful consideration.

The monthly summary provides an opportunity for any new information on policies, new laws, changes in the status of rare species known to frequent the airport, training programs or management reviews to be written and stored in a readily accessible location.


15.3 Wildlife Strikes

The regulations now require airport management to report all wildlife strikes to Transport Canada as they occur or to file an annual report detailing all wildlife strikes by March 01 of the following year. [Identify here which method this airport is going to implement.]

When reporting a wildlife strike, the Transport Canada form titled Bird/Wildlife Strike Report number #51-0272 can be used and is available on-line at:


Any information that the airport operator has, that is outlined on the form, should be included. If strike data become increasingly reliable sources of information, they will also assist in the risk analysis procedure for this airport and future updates to this AWMP.

Wildlife strikes are now defined by Transport Canada as occurring when:

  1. a pilot reports the striking of wildlife;
  2. aircraft maintenance personnel identify damage to an aircraft as having been caused by a wildlife strike;
  3. personnel on the ground report seeing an aircraft strike wildlife; or
  4. wildlife remains are found on an airside pavement area or within 200 feet of a runway centreline, unless another cause of death is identified.

Strike data will be entered into the wildlife management database with the required fields of information provided (see Appendix 3 of the Wildlife Control Procedures Manual). The software discussed in the preceding section includes a data entry window for wildlife strikes.

At this airport, regular wildlife patrols will note any dead wildlife found within 200 m of the runway centreline, for struck wildlife species. Notation will also be made of any animal remains that are considered non-strikes, prior to their removal.

Where the identity of remains of wildlife species that have been struck is in doubt, parts will be preserved for identification. After taking a digital photograph for the Wildlife Log, remains will be bagged in zip-lock bags (i.e., bones, fur, feathers of different types, bill and feet, but not soft tissues). Specialists may be able to identify a bird from a single small feather, so even if they look unidentifiable, remains should be recovered. Specimen material can be sent by courier to: Ms. Carla J. Dove, Division of Birds, Smithsonian Institution PO Box 37012 National Museum of Natural History Room E 607 MRC 116 Washington, DC 20013-7012 USA. (Email: dove.carla@nmnh.si.edu). The form can be found on-line at:


WMOs should also consider the collection of any strikes (even those identified) should stomach contents or bird age be a factor for future consideration (i.e., what food source was attracting the bird to airport?).

In addition to any studies, research, or other new information that is available, the Daily Wildlife Management Log and the Monthly Summaries will be carefully examined for information that will assist the required two-year update to this AWMP.

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