Why is that cardinal knocking on my window?

lbelleApril 21, 2009

I have a bird feeder outside a large window facing south. This one particular cardinal keeps peeking into my house. Now he is pecking at the window as if he's trying to tell me something. Any ideas? I don't think it's because of a reflection, but maybe he sees something I don't?

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He's telling that 'other' cardinal in the reflection to get the heck outta his territory. If he starts rushing it, and flying at it in a rage, you'll know for sure.

Meantime, you might get something to break up the reflection. . .and put it over the windows to keep the birds from doing that (as well as to keep them from flying into the window when they see the sky and trees reflected in it and try to fly to it).

    Bookmark   April 21, 2009 at 10:57AM
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OK. So I tried putting up things to break up the window. Even when I have a pillow over the area he usually looks into, he still flies at it. He has also found another window to peck at and fly into. I don't have curtains for these windows, but taping up scattered magazine pages has not helped-he goes around them. Aside from putting up curtains on the OUTSIDE of my windows, how do I get him to stop worrying? And me to stop being annoyed at the banging all day long.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 5:03PM
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I experienced this behavior on and off for several years at my last house. Big PITA. Not just the incessant banging, but the concurrent crap, as well. (Yes, the bird seemed to be evacuating it's insides as it hit the window or glass door...yuck.) There is little you can do besides covering the window with cardboard. We moved...though not because of the cardinal. :-)

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 7:23PM
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Cardinals are notorious for this behavior. It's all about the territory thing for them. As the others have said, he doesn't realize the other bird is his reflection. We watched a cardinal to this to a parked mini van last weekend. It didn't take him long to find his relfection in the van's side mirrors.

I had a robin behaving this way a few weeks ago, made a mess out of my window. I was afraid it was going to hurt itself because I saw little bits of blood on the window from the severe pecking.

Like the others said, the only thing you can do is cover that window up best as you can.

Welcome to mating season, even though the skies the limit, they still seem to find one window to harass.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 2:34PM
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Plastic owl worked for one window. Cardinal simply moved to other side of house where there are 4 other windows for him to peck at. I bought another owl today. Hopefully that will cover those windows.

Hawk cutout in window did not stop him. Neither did white curtains. So far the only thing that stopped it on the one window was the plastic owl.

Hope that helps. I know I almost went insane with the stupid "bird brain". (That and the coons that keep digging up our flowers and terrorizing us in other ways!)


    Bookmark   July 11, 2009 at 6:46PM
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Things inside the window won't stop the reflection. Some one suggested covering the outside of the window with cardboard -- that will work. But if you want to be able to look out of the window, try cheesecloth or other white mesh material outside the window. From outside, the sunlight makes the white of the mesh brighter than the refection, so the reflection is not seen. But from the inside, you see the shadow side of the mesh, and the bright outdoor scenery is brighter and more visible. You may need to stretch the white mesh material over a frame to keep winds from blowing it aside. Or tape it to the frame of the window.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2009 at 11:36PM
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OK, so now it's almost December and my crazy cardinal has been pestering me everyday. I swear he now thinks we are cardinal, because he has flown into the window when I am in the computer room or laundry room .... when the sun is on the other side! It's kinda creepy. Yet, now, I think I'm going insane. I can;t realistically cover all of my large windows with cheesecloth. and if I did, for how long?

How long do cardinals live? Or stay in their territory? What if I get a fake cardinal or two ? I really can't move right now...

    Bookmark   December 1, 2009 at 12:12AM
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Put up some silver balloons so when he pecks it, it gives him a surprise?

I recall reading a book where a couple coated the window with vasaline and then cover it with toilet paper. I suppose one of the those christmas snow spray would work, too and is better looking.

Can you add a layer of fiberglass screen between the window and the cardinal. At least, it will deaden the sound?


    Bookmark   December 1, 2009 at 12:51AM
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I'm not hopeful. We've had a cardinal at our one window for two seasons now. In December I got desparate and tried to make a trap out of duct tape so when he came to the window the little guy would either not see his reflection, get scared away, or get stuck to the tape. He just worked his way into the little spaces between my tape. I'm trying to come to peace with the incessant tapping. That's not going so well.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2010 at 7:55PM
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We had birds flying into our windows. One woodpecker actually stood on the windsill and tapped on the window! Drove the poor dogs crazy! We went out and bought some UV reflective decals at the local bird food store. So far they seem to be working. I believe there were 4 clear maple leaf shped decals in the pkg. Maybe these would help in your situation? Just thought I'd mention it. Marg

    Bookmark   January 21, 2010 at 9:05AM
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Decals have worked for me to keep birds from flying into windows. I don't know if they would work to keep a bird protecting it's territory from attacking it's image or not. It might be worth a try. I bought mine at this link.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2010 at 1:52PM
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