Bird Population Control Fogging at JBSA-Randolph Base Housing

  • Published
  • By Sean Worrell
  • 12th Flying Training Wing

Starting mid-July daily fogging of tree canopies using EcoBird 4.0 will commence at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph base housing and will continue through September. This operation will take place approximately 15 to 30 minutes before sunrise each day.

The fogging occurs in the early morning to minimize exposure to base residents and to alter the birds' morning habits by pushing them from residential areas to Cibolo Creek earlier in the day. This adjustment mitigates risks to pilot training by allowing the 12th Flying Training Wing (12 FTW) instructor pilots to utilize the East runway with reduced risk of bird strikes during the initial flights.

Bird dispersal teams will administer the specially formulated solution, which contains methyl anthranilate, a grape flavoring agent used in many food products and completely harmless to humans and pets. This fragrance or flavoring is commonly found in soda, ice cream, candy, and gelatin. The solution, approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, will be dispersed from foggers attached to Wing Safety vehicles, specifically targeting the tree canopies where birds tend to roost.

Tree canopy fogging is part of a proactive and preventative measure aimed at controlling the bird population that establishes seasonal roosts within the housing area during the spring migration. The goal of this initiative is to reduce the bird strike threat to the 12th FTW aircraft and to minimize the need for extensive tree removal and trimming.

The effort underscores the Wing's commitment to both safety and environmental stewardship, balancing the needs of wildlife management with operational readiness. By employing EcoBird 4.0, the base aims to ensure a safer flying environment for the 12 FTW while maintaining the natural landscape of the housing area.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the 12 FTW Safety Office at (210) 652-2224.