Date of this Version
Proceedings 18th Vertebrate Pest Conference, ed. R.O. Baker & A.C. Crabb. Published at University of California, Davis, 1998.
Each year, the United States Air Force (USAF) reports approximately 3,000 bird strikes to its aircraft. These incidents cost nearly $50 million on average. In the last decade, the Air Force has suffered the loss of 14 aircraft and 33 aircrew fatalities. The other services report higher rates of strikes per flying hour and suffer similar losses. Civilian aircraft are not immune to this problem, and U.S. airlines report nearly $100 million in annual losses. Most bird strikes occur around airfields where habitat management, bird dispersal techniques, and active population control can be employed. For military aircraft, however, the majority of catastrophic incidents occur on high-speed, low-level, and range missions where bird control is not possible. The only alternative in these environments is to avoid known bird concentrations. This is where the Bird Avoidance Model (BAM) comes into play.