Lahore Airport Reported the Most Bird Strikes in Last 6 Months

Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has reported an overall gradual decline in the trend of bird strikes at airports from June to November 2022.

In total, there were 111 bird strike incidents in 6 months. The highest number of bird strikes in six months was 35 at Allama Iqbal International Airport, Lahore.

The least number of bird hits were recorded at 3, at Sukkur Airport, while Jinnah International Airport, Karachi, reported 21 bird strikes during the said time period.

Sialkot International Airport and Islamabad International Airport reported 14 bird strike incidents each, while Quetta International Airport and Bacha Khan International Airport, Peshawar, reported 7 and 8 bird strikes respectively.

Faisalabad International Airport was reported as the 2nd to least amount of bird strike incidents at just 6 bird hits.

Overall, the highest bird strikes of this year were reported during July 2022, at 25 hits. In contrast, the lowest 11 bird hits were reported in November 2022.

Bird Strike Mitigation

Federal Minister for Aviation, Khawaja Saad Rafique, ordered the CAA to collaborate with Pakistan Air Force (PAF) and explore global best practices for effective bird control at Lahore’s Allama Iqbal International Airport.

The development comes after the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) wrote to the CAA’s Director General (DG) Flt. Lt. (Retd.) Khaqan Murtaza, and the Director Airport Services (DAS) CAA Saadiq ur Rehman, asking them to adopt humane bird deterrents instead of deploying bird shooters to minimize their collision with the planes.

PETA’s Vice President (VP) of International Laboratory Methods, Shalin Gala, wrote a letter to the DG CAA on August 10, asserting that the expenditure on poisoning or shooting birds at airports is simply a waste because more birds will move in to benefit from favorable habitat, resulting in an infinite killing cycle.

He further elaborated that the main principle of effective wildlife management systems is that animals will simply move on if food sources are eliminated from the environment, making it undesirable for them.