Nature Canada

Peterborough earns Nature Canada’s “Bird Friendly City” designation


Unceded Algonquin Territory – Ottawa, ON, 12 May, 2022 – Nature Canada is proud to announce Canada’s next certified Bird Friendly City, Peterborough, ON. Peterborough becomes the 11th city in Canada to earn the designation.

The City of Peterborough has worked in collaboration with Nature Canada’s partners including Kawartha Wildlife Centre, Peterborough Field Naturalists, Riverview Park and Zoo, GreenUp and Camp Kawartha, along with other individuals and community organizations to make Peterborough a safe haven for wild birds.

Kim Zippel, Councillor, Ward 1, City of Peterborough

Living outside the ordinary is the motto of Nogojiwanong-Peterborough, and part of what makes our community extraordinary is the ‘WOW’ factor of discovering migratory and resident birds in our wetlands, on the Otonabee River, Little Lake, and in our woodlands – all within the boundaries of our city! Bird Friendly certification by Nature Canada is an important milestone for Peterborough that will help drive actions to enhance our urban canopy, engage citizen scientists, and as we grow, design an urban environment that allows birds to flourish. 

With the many birding hotspots already established across the City of Peterborough, becoming a Bird Friendly City will build on the stewardship efforts of our citizens and will ignite an even greater understanding and respect for our relationships, and interconnections, with the natural world. This achievement would not have been possible without the passion and efforts of the Bird Friendly Peterborough Team, so thank you, Miigwech, for taking us on this flight to make Peterborough a Bird Friendly City!

The city has implemented bird friendly policies and actions to help birds thrive in Peterborough. These actions include: 

  • Establishing a “no-roam” by-law for cats to reduce the impact of cat predation on wild bird populations;
  • Educational campaigns for residents that raise awareness of threats to birds and information on how to mitigate these threats;
  • Providing opportunity for residents to get involved in community science projects for bird conservation

The Bird Friendly City designation has been developed by Nature Canada to encourage Canadian cities and municipalities to become safer and better places for birds. 

Birds play an essential role in maintaining healthy and resilient ecosystems in our communities and on our planet. But there are three billion fewer birds in North America today than 50 years ago. Much of these losses are caused by human activities. As urban expansion continues, cities must act quickly to ensure that North America’s bird populations are protected and supported. Nature Canada’s Bird Friendly City program encourages communities to take action to:

  • reduce the number of human-related threats to birds such as roaming cats, the use of pesticides, and glass treatment on buildings with large windows,
  • create safe environments for birds by promoting stewardship and ensuring that natural habitats are protected and restored,
  • engage and educate citizens about the benefits of Bird Friendly Cities and celebrating birds in our communities.

In each municipality seeking to become Bird Friendly certified, Bird Teams are created and residents are actively engaged in protecting, monitoring and celebrating their local bird populations. 

Nature Canada is pleased to acknowledge the support of Environment and Climate Change Canada for the Bird Friendly City program and World Migratory Bird Day. As part of the Bird Friendly City program, Bird Teams are encouraged to host World Migratory Bird Day events to celebrate welcoming migratory birds back into our neighborhoods each spring! 


The annual cycle of birds: nesting, laying, fledging, and migration is one of life’s great rhythms; one that represents hope for renewal and opportunity for new beginnings. With challenges abounding–and mounting–for birds throughout our ecosystems, I am pleased that Peterborough will become one of Canada’s Bird Friendly Cities, taking up the challenge to create safe spaces for birds to thrive. I can’t wait to see what our Peterborough community, passionate about conservation, can accomplish!”

Professor Thomas Luloff, Fleming College

Bird Friendly Peterborough Steering Committee Vice-Chair. 

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