Toronto Bird Photo Booth is a Storytelling Exercise, A Friendly Match for Businesses

2014 Toronto Bird Photo Booth Business Challenge is the original bird ‘selfie’ portrait contest that was made back in May 2014 to showcase custom loyalty program software through storytelling, and is not a true photo contest, but more like a friendly match between businesses hosting the booth.

Emma from Spectacle Loves U aims Toronto bird photo boothWhat is the Toronto Bird Photo Booth? If you don’t know already, a bird photo booth is a feeder attached to a digital camera, triggered by a motion detector. Its a wonderful piece of technology that makes art to serve nature.

There are two cameras here – one is an iPhone 5C purchased by John Conn of Standard Telecom, office phones service in Toronto who hosted Week Three,  and the other is the WIngscapes BirdPro trail cam which is a handy back-up unit.

Would you like to host the Toronto Bird Photo Booth for a week on your GTA business property?

The rig is programmed to take pictures of any wild birds that land at the feeder. The idea is to see who has the best wild birds. Businesses hosting the Toronto Bird Photo Booth can enter their pics into the friendly bird portrait photo contest for prizes.
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SMOJoe launches Birds of Toronto, and now I chronicle developments on the blog and also write weekly Bird Photo Booth updates for Toronto is Awesome magazine.

Look below at this English sparrow that thinks its a terrifying huge hawk; its emulating some larger bird of prey as it tries to scare away another fellow from the feeder.   
Scary Sparrow 2Like any playground, It isn’t long before an even meaner House sparrow with a distinctive white stripe on his wings appears to scare everyone away for a spell. You’ve never seen these tiny birds up close like this! I’ve gained a new appreciation for these sparrows by seeing them so close and full of emotion, and I imagine these birds are reacting the same way humans would fight over a big pile of cash left in the street.

House Sparrow, Birds of TorontoThese birds really do have lots of have personality ! See again how white stripes simply refuses to share the bowl.

white strips at feeder dish, dominatesThis storytelling started back in June and the photography is getting better each week.

The Toronto Bird Photo Booth Challenge was on Bird Canada, last week. This story is where tech meets nature and the arrangement yields visually stimulating content. Each update chronicles the last host’s contributions, and features a new competitor’s story alongside their gallery of pictures.  At the end of the summer, Judges will review the best photos and reward the best ‘birders’ among the people who positioned the cameras . And there will be prizes. TBD

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Ornilux Bird Friendly Glass Fosters Bird Friendly Building Trend in Toronto

Do you have many bird friendly building examples in your city or town?  What is it in particular that makes them bird friendly? Please answer in comments. The  trend has other elements like decoys and disruptive lighting and audio discouraging elements.  What do you do ?

Ornilux glass if ornithologically superior glass, birds see spiderwebs over reflection of skyWhen birds strike office tower windows at great speeds, it’s not because they want to get inside these places, or because they’re out of their minds on toxic chemicals, but rather its because they see a reflection of an open sky and believe they have clear passage.   Autopsies on bird carcasses taken from city streets often show perfectly healthy animals that simply cracked open their skulls like egg shells in a high impact collision with a plate glass window.

Ornilux glass is ornithologically superior glass. Bird friendly glass has evolved from innovations in glass making since 2nd century AD. The first stain glass windows for churches appeared in 6th century ad but were very crude and often composed of thinly sliced alabaster. After Rome was sacked by the Goths in 465 AD glass making went into decline for almost 800 years until it was revived in Venice Italy.

Cristallo is a glass which is totally clear (like rock crystal), without the slight yellow or greenish color originating from iron oxide impurities and so it was the first truly reflective glass that even sparkles like a gemstone in certain lighting conditions.  You can understand how blue and red Cristallo could mimic rare gemstones!   This effect is achieved through small additions of manganese oxide – an improvement on pyrolusite recipes.  Often Cristallo has a low lime content which makes it prone to glass corrosion (otherwise known as glass disease).

how Geber made red glass

Persian alchemist, Abu Musa Jabir ibn Hayyan, known simply as “Geber” or Jabir recorded dozens of formulas for the production of glass in specific colors.  Geber was Arabia’s most prolific chemistry writer and thinker at the head of one of the world’s foremost academic intuitions in Persia.

Jabir’s writings describe methods, for evaporation, filtration, sublimation, melting, distillation, calcination and crystallization. At least two treatises attributed to him lay down the basic rules for conducting, recording and verifying experiments.

How to Make Fake Ruby Red Glass

Jabir was also the first to describe the preparation of cinnabar, arsenious oxide, alum, alkalis, antimony, saltpeter, mercury oxide and lead acetate. He also determined that a mixture of sulfuric and nitric acid (aqua regia) would dissolve gold. His acid was key to making red glass.  Cranberry glass is made in craft production rather than in large quantities, due to the high cost of the gold. The gold chloride is made by dissolving gold in a solution of nitric acid and hydrochloric acid (aqua regia). The glass is typically hand blown or molded. The finished, hardened glass is a type of colloid, a solid phase (gold) dispersed inside another solid phase (glass).

Today, most tall buildings in North America have highly reflective windows that trick birds’ vision, and what these creature’ brains perceive as the open sky, is instead a 3/4 inch thick wall of glass.  Dead birds liter the sidewalks in big cities.  Residential sunrooms and conservatories are equally deadly.

There’s discussion about bird friendly building trends on urban Toronto and a similar conversation about the need to recognize bird friendly building practices in Canadian Content environmental science forum and both are designed to raise awareness for the problem of modern glass creating such perfect reflections of the sky, and thereby causing bird strikes which are now, over time, having a drastic negative affect on the population of migratory birds all over the world.

Ornilux is ornithologically superior glass which birds perceive as shifting thick spiderwebs and something to be avoided.  The Arnold Glass co innovation comes at the end of along line of advances in stained glass windows propel glass making technology, but this breakthrough alone is not enough – the architects and engineers have got to want to make change. They have to want to seek out special glass that’s expensive and hard to find.

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What are some known bird friendly buildings in your area? what makes them so special?  What else can we do to raise awareness to help prevent bird strikes?