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Old 09-13-2019, 04:47 PM
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Outdoor air quality

I currently live in a flat and I don't have a garden which means I don't get to take my birds outside as much as I want. However I am now looking to move to a house and the plan is to build an aviary that is joined to the house, accessible by a back door or something, so that in the summer my birds can go in and out as they please. The thing I'm a little worried about is that some of the houses I've been looking at are on very busy roads, and though the garden obviously isn't right on the road I cant imagine that the air quality is brilliant. I live in Norwich, England so its not an overly polluted city like London but still. What are your opinions on this? How far away from a road do you think is safe air for birds?
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Old 09-13-2019, 08:04 PM
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Re: Outdoor air quality

Growing up on or near a main road has devastating effects on asthma rates, asthma severity, mental health, IQ and crime rates in British humans, and birds are even more sensitive to airborne pollutants than most human asthmatics. The damage is so bad that even people without asthma are officially advised to never jog or exert their cardiovascular system in any way when outside in or near the centre of a big city in this country, because as bad as no exercise is, doing exercise in our toxic air manages to be even worse and every single time you run in central London or a similarly polluted area you're shortening your life and more importantly reducing quality of life because of the immediate effects on your mood and cognitive abilities and long-term effects on the same if your brain is still developing. Instead of reducing depression and anxiety, jogging near a main road makes them worse, because unlike clean-air exercise that immediately increases levels of BDNF, toxic-air exercise immediately decreases them.

So if I had the choice I wouldn't live anywhere near a main road, even if I didn't have a bird.
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Old 09-13-2019, 10:31 PM
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Re: Outdoor air quality

I'd worry about theft,!!! Some idiot will cut in and steal the birds...
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Old 09-14-2019, 02:43 AM
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Re: Outdoor air quality

Quote: Originally Posted by Laurasea View Post
I'd worry about theft,!!! Some idiot will cut in and steal the birds...
They would only be let out into the aviary whilst I was there. But you're right, that is another concern of mine having so many people going by.
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Old 09-14-2019, 02:51 AM
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Re: Outdoor air quality

Quote: Originally Posted by Aspie_Aviphile View Post
Growing up on or near a main road has devastating effects on asthma rates, asthma severity, mental health, IQ and crime rates in British humans, and birds are even more sensitive to airborne pollutants than most human asthmatics. The damage is so bad that even people without asthma are officially advised to never jog or exert their cardiovascular system in any way when outside in or near the centre of a big city in this country, because as bad as no exercise is, doing exercise in our toxic air manages to be even worse and every single time you run in central London or a similarly polluted area you're shortening your life and more importantly reducing quality of life because of the immediate effects on your mood and cognitive abilities and long-term effects on the same if your brain is still developing. Instead of reducing depression and anxiety, jogging near a main road makes them worse, because unlike clean-air exercise that immediately increases levels of BDNF, toxic-air exercise immediately decreases them.

So if I had the choice I wouldn't live anywhere near a main road, even if I didn't have a bird.
Living on main road definitely isn't my first choice! I want to live in the middle of nowhere with zero neighbours and noise but I also don't want a huge commute every day for work. This post is mostly directed towards one house in particular - big house with a big garden, but it's right on a busy road and needs a hell of a lot of work. The work I can look past because I know I'd never be able to afford something that size otherwise but the main road thing is a big issue.
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Old 09-14-2019, 06:01 PM
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Re: Outdoor air quality

My parents live near a busy road and put their birds outside for a couple hours during the day a couple times a week in the summer. Never had any breathing issues with their birds. Similarly, we live close to a freeway and Kiwi enjoys our balcony for a few hours at a time every so often to no ill effect. I would only be concerned if they spent A LOT of time outside or lived outside. A few hours here or there should be fine. Don’t leave them unattended for long stretches outside (check in every 15 or so minutes, minimum) and never leave them outside when you leave the house as a matter of general safety. Just use common sense.

Also want to remind folks that indoor air quality is often as bad if not worse than outdoor air quality, since home furnishings, building materials etc... put off dust and fumes, outdoor pollutants get trapped inside and especially in damp climates where you also have mold and mildew spores floating around on top of other pollutants. While most bird owners have better indoor air quality than the typical home filled with scented things and harsh cleaning chemicals, you need to be more concerned with having indoor air purifiers IMO. That’s the air your birds breathe all the time, not a few times a week a few months out of the year of being outside.
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Old 09-14-2019, 06:12 PM
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Re: Outdoor air quality

How busy is the busy road? Is it highway busy or rural road busy? If it's the latter I personally wouldn't worry about it. If you can hold a conversation in the garden without the traffic noise bothering you I would think you're OK.
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Old Yesterday, 02:21 AM
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Re: Outdoor air quality

Quote: Originally Posted by Kiwibird View Post
My parents live near a busy road and put their birds outside for a couple hours during the day a couple times a week in the summer. Never had any breathing issues with their birds. Similarly, we live close to a freeway and Kiwi enjoys our balcony for a few hours at a time every so often to no ill effect. I would only be concerned if they spent A LOT of time outside or lived outside. A few hours here or there should be fine. Donít leave them unattended for long stretches outside (check in every 15 or so minutes, minimum) and never leave them outside when you leave the house as a matter of general safety. Just use common sense.

Also want to remind folks that indoor air quality is often as bad if not worse than outdoor air quality, since home furnishings, building materials etc... put off dust and fumes, outdoor pollutants get trapped inside and especially in damp climates where you also have mold and mildew spores floating around on top of other pollutants. While most bird owners have better indoor air quality than the typical home filled with scented things and harsh cleaning chemicals, you need to be more concerned with having indoor air purifiers IMO. Thatís the air your birds breathe all the time, not a few times a week a few months out of the year of being outside.

Thank you Kiwibird. I would stay out with them the whole time anyway and it would most likely only be on the few nice summer weekends we get here. I do try to keep my indoor air quality as clean as possible.
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Old Yesterday, 02:28 AM
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Re: Outdoor air quality

Quote: Originally Posted by bill_e View Post
How busy is the busy road? Is it highway busy or rural road busy? If it's the latter I personally wouldn't worry about it. If you can hold a conversation in the garden without the traffic noise bothering you I would think you're OK.
It's not on a freeway busy road but it is a pretty major inner city road. I doubt you have them in America with your cities being so big but its a ringroad, it circles the central city bit so it does see a lot of traffic but generally the traffic isn't going very fast maybe 30mph average. The house in question has actually now sold but I still want to know what sort of roads are safe in terms of air quality.
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