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Birds in the Terminal

Occasionally birds make their way into the airport terminal. We use a variety of methods to catch and remove birds from indoor spaces and bring them safely back outside.

How do birds get into the terminal?

As the largest building in BC, with hundreds of doors and windows, birds can make their way inside the terminal from time to time. The open architecture inside the building allows the birds to find their way to almost any area within the terminal. The birds typically find their way out on their own, however, some opt to stay. 

What does YVR do for these birds?

We take great care with birds and wildlife at YVR and have a comprehensive wildlife management program with a team of wildlife biologists who assess and monitor birds at our airport. The team keeps a watch on the birds and will safely remove them as needed. 

Each time a sighting is reported, our wildlife management team monitors the situation and employs a variety of methods to attempt to capture and safely remove birds. 

The birds can prove very difficult to remove, especially intelligent birds like crows. This difficulty is compounded by security requirements, making it difficult to provide exits. YVR uses a range of non-lethal measures to try and safely usher these birds back into their natural settings. Thin nets are placed in their typical flight paths, and cages with water and food are placed near their favourite harbourage points. 

All measures used within YVR are safe for the bird. Captured birds are later released back into nature.

Impact to artwork

Usually birds in the terminal pose no impact to operations, nor show any signs of distress. However, their excrement can be damaging to our beautiful artwork. In some cases, our art maintenance and curation team will cover artwork to prevent any bird excrement from landing on the items.

Please don't feed the birds

Our terminal birds can get peckish, but do not feed them. Food is provided by our wildlife services team and used to aid the catch and release.

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