Wellington Cable Car Bird Strike Prevention Project

$9,020 of $11,864 goal
Given by 160 generous donors in around 3 months

This project will make a significant difference in protecting native birds, we hope this project will inspire others to take similar action.


Project brief:

Wellington Cable Car is a high-profile attraction in the Capital City of New Zealand. Not only is the cable car used daily by local Wellingtonians, but it is also a significant visitor attraction. The Cable Car summit terminal building is located between two significant bird habitats – Wellington Botanic Garden to the north and Zealandia Ecosanctuary to the south. The stunning glass terminal building is unfortunately right in the flight path of birds, and the Cable Car team report regular bird deaths including kererū, kakariki, korimako, ruru, as well as other bird species.

Project benefits and conservation outcomes:

Birds dying and getting injured by flying into windows happens regularly in New Zealand, both in homes and commercial buildings. These are distressing experiences for all, and yet window strike seems to be accepted as unavoidable. We want to demonstrate that action can be taken to prevent bird deaths through an innovative initiative with the Wellington Cable Car. Windows are essentially invisible to birds, and collisions occur as birds try to fly through reflections of open space and plants. Worldwide the annual number of birds killed by collisions is estimated to be in the billions. Urban Wildlife Trust and Wellington Cable Car would like to make a difference to this animal welfare and conservation issue and to be the first building in New Zealand to officially install window markers designed to prevent window strike.

Experiments for effective window strike prevention have shown that exterior window applications, such as densely applied stripes or dots, are required. There are no local commercial products available, but Feather Friendly® Window Markers are proven effective overseas and they have reached out to partner with us on this project.

In addition to the conservation benefits of reducing injury and death of birds, installation of Window Markers would also help reduce the distress caused to staff, visitors and commuters witnessing any bird window strike at the Cable Car building. It will also empower New Zealanders to take their own action to mitigate window strike and protect precious native birds from this avoidable human-created harm.

Design solution:

Feather Friendly® started over 15 years ago by developing bird collision technology and by assisting the Canadian Fatal Light Awareness Programme (FLAP), and the City of Toronto.

Feather Friendly® has led the way in protecting birds from window strike fatalities, through their Bird Deterrent Technology, designed to protect birds while enhancing the building’s design. Feather Friendly® boasts a number of projects that were installed more than a decade ago and still outperform after exposure to window cleaning and harsh weather in Toronto – the first city in the world to create Safe Building Bylaws in bird conservation, which Feather Friendly® helped establish.

As part of its ongoing education program, Feather Friendly® has sponsored free unlimited access to the Canadian Standards Associations (CSA) Bird-Friendly Building Design Standard. This standard was developed through collaboration with many groups concerned with bird safety including ornithologists, architects, conservation authorities, glass manufacturers and industry advocates. As a result of this collaboration, bird-friendly building standards are now applied across many of the major cities in the USA and Canada, including Toronto, Vancouver, San Francisco, New York, Oakland, California, Chicago, Washington D.C., and New York City.

Can you help us fund this project?

Funding is being sought for this project as the issue of bird deaths is an ongoing and urgent problem which the Urban Wildlife Trust and Wellington Cable Car wish to address. This project will make a significant difference in protecting native birds – both locally and beyond. As the first building in New Zealand to implement specially designed bird strike prevention, we hope that this project will inspire others to take similar action.

Funding Required:

1650 ft2 - Feather Friendly® commercial window markers

Coast = $7,719

Installation + scissor lift

Cost $3,500

5% Givealittle Service Cost

Total project funding cost = $11,864


Read about Feather Friendly® commercial window markers


About us

Our vision at Urban Wildlife Trust is to enhance the mauri of urban nature, and for native wildlife to be an integral and celebrated part of people’s daily life. We are a small group committed to making a difference to urban nature, delivering projects, innovation, and advice helping communities restore and protect wildlife.

Use of funds

100% of the funds go towards the Stage 1 project costs and installation. This project is fully endorsed by The Wellington Cable Car Company, Wellington Zoo, WCC Wellington Gardens and Zealandia Ecosanctuary.

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Latest update

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Wellington Cable Car - New Zealand's first bird safe building  20 March 2022

Here is a time-lapse video I filmed over 4 days of The Cable Car Feather Friendly Installation. The project was completed on 17th March 2022.

Thanks to everyone involved and to all that contributed to this project. Thanks to Wellington Cable Car, Feather Friendly Bird Collision Deterrent Markers and the Wellington Zoo.

On behalf of the Urban Wildlife Trust, I would like to thank you all again for making Wellington a safer place for our native birds.

#windowssafeforbirds #BirdSafe #FeatherFriendly #kererū #wellingtonzoo #wellingtoncablecar #wellingtonnz #signsqaud

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This campaign started on 18 May 2021 and ended on 18 Aug 2021.