University responds to calls to change external cladding on buildings following numerous Bird deaths

The university has stated it will “investigate and implement reasonable all technical adjustments.” to stop future incidents

Recently students discovered a small bird trapped within the external cladding of the BMRC building. It is unclear how exactly the bird became stuck, in a video posted on the UEA ticket exchange the bird appears quite obviously rather distressed.

One thing is clear though, this isn't the first time this had happened. Students have discovered the remains numerous other birds who were also trapped. With one student commenting on a video of the trapped bird stating; "Although there are lots of small bird corpses, all the ones I could see were covered in maggots- they looked like they had been there for days, not hours."

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The BMRC building.

A university spokesperson told the Tab Norwich; "The University’s Estates department has been made aware of a bird or birds believed to be behind the external cladding of the BMRC building. Unfortunately this is a time of year when young birds do leave or fall out of nests. UEA’s maintenance and grounds staff always aim to assist any animal in need, whenever and wherever that is possible.

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The remains of a bird trapped behind the cladding.

On this occasion, Maintenance colleagues have visited the site in order to assess removing the external cladding. Unfortunately, because of the way the cladding is engineered we would need to remove each panel from ground up to the roof, the work would require large mobile lifting equipment we don’t have on campus, and it would take approximately a week to complete the work. This would, regretfully, be too long a period to enable a successful resolution.

You have our assurance that Estates will investigate and implement reasonable all technical adjustments to the cladding that will hopefully help avoid similar incidents occurring in the future."

The UEA campus is well known for its wildlife.

The Tab Norwich reached out to Kaitlyn Neve, the 2nd year Art History student, who discovered the trapped bird. We began by asking her how she discovered it; "I was walking to the bus stop from the Sainsbury Centre, and I noticed a bird was flying at the wall very purposefully. I could hear two chirps but I could only see one bird. That’s when I found the little guy.

He’s was only a young bird, and we think he fell from the highest point of the building where the birds may have made their nest. This baby bird could have fallen 12 feet easily down this narrow opening in the building’s wall." Kaitlyn states she contacted the RSPCA, RSPB and UEA's Grounds and Estates teams, but was told the cost would be too high and by the time the cladding could be removed it would be too late. She described watching the bird's parents bringing it food as "one of the most heartbreaking things I have ever experienced."

A screenshot from a video of the trapped bird. Whether it has died like the others found is unknown.

We then asked Kaitlyn what she thought of the universities response, she stated; "Well I want the university to actually pull their thumb out of their arse, find the equipment and pay for the weeks worth of work. If we can get enough people behind us wanting this too we can show the numbers and demand things to change."

She went on to say "If that isn't possible, then I want them to tell us what precautions they can put in place, like the direct details of what they aim to do and give us a time limit and make sure these are met."