In The News

Loomacres Biologists Tapped for North American Bird Strike Conference
Sep 09th, 2011

WARNERVILLE, N.Y., Two wildlife biologists from Loomacres Wildlife Management will present research results on crucial airport safety issues related to bird strike prevention management and awareness at the 13th North American Bird Strike Conference in Niagara Falls, Canada, Sept. 12-15, 2011.

About 300 airport managers, aircraft owners, wildlife managers, government personnel, and others in the aviation industry will gather at the conference. This year’s theme is “Industry and Science: Working Together.”

Using data from hazard assessments conducted in the eastern United States, John Watterson will focus on how maintaining certain grass heights can deter geese and other birds from airports. “It is important to note that all airports face different wildlife hazard issues and managers must tailor their grass and wildlife management strategies to best suit their airports’ conditions,” Watterson says.

Garrett Grilli will report on research he completed at an airport in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan on its unused dam and pond and his recommendations to remove the dam and return the pond to a stream habitat. “This will reduce dangerous waterfowl activity at the airport,” Grilli points out. “Geese and ducks, which are major hazards to aircraft, are less likely to use streams than ponds.”

Loomacres Wildlife Management conducts its own research on wildlife hazard mitigation at airports and also sponsors research projects at educational institutions. “Loomacres is continually conducting research to find new and innovative practices and tools to use in managing wildlife hazards at airports,” Watterson says. “The goal is to increase aviation safety and reduce bird and wildlife strikes.”

Watterson earned his master of science degree in wildlife biology from Arkansas Tech University. He has a strong research and field biology background, including studies on federally listed endangered bird species.

Grilli has extensive experience conducting wildlife surveys on airfields across the United States. He has a bachelor’s degree in wildlife management from the State University of New York at Cobleskill.

Loomacres Wildlife Management ( has long worked to reduce bird strikes at airports using strategies such as the removal of wildlife attractants and the use of deterrents such as pyrotechnics. Loomacres also educates airport employees about ways to reduce wildlife hazards, part of which involves learning to identify different wildlife species.

For more information on Looomacres’ work to manage wildlife at airports, contact Cody Baciuska, wildlife biologist, at, or 607-760-8748.