Proposed features/Bird Tower
|Status:||Draft (under way)|
|Definition:||A man made bird nesting aid mounted on a mast or tower.|
|Drafted on:||2016-09-20 (by the Ulmer Alb mapping group)|
A bird tower is a man made mast or tower equipped with one or multiple birds nests, serving as an artificial nesting aid, compensating the reduction of traditional nesting opportunities. The proposal is motivated by the sighting of swallows towers in Germany.
In German, for naming towers for swallows the terms Schwalbenhaus (swallows house) or Schwalbenturm (swallows tower) are used, as described in Wikipedia. 
The proposed tagging should be used only for explicit nesting aids. It is not intended to be used for other man made towers that "accidently" carry a bird's nest, e.g. like "misused" power towers and chimneys, or natural towers like trees or tall stumps.
A couple of bird towers have already been mapped in different ways:
None of the used tagging methods seems to be fully appropriate to tag a bird tower in general. So, a new combination of tags is proposed.
For mapping the tower itself, a generic mapping is proposed to be used. If a wooden or metal mast is utilized, the tag man_made=mast seems suitable. If multiple masts or other constructions have been used, the tag man_made=tower may be fitting better.
Then, the bird nests should be specialized for the bird type, e.g. for barn swallows with birds_nest=barn_swallow or for common swifts with birds_nest=common_swift or for white storks with birds_nest=white_stork. Other bird species may be tagged in a similar way. We should use the English common name for tagging, see List of bird by common name on Wikipedia.
Additionally and also optionally, a name=* can be given. Remark: Naming should only be used, if the bird tower has a specific name, e.g. constituted on a label or plate fixed at the mast. A naming like "Swallows tower" is not wise.
Here is the summarized proposed tagging:
man_made=mast or man_made=tower tower:type=birds_nest birds_nest=* (type of bird, obligatory) material=* (material of the mast, optional) capacity=* (number of mounted nests, optional) name=* (specific name of the bird tower, optional)
As type a node or an area can be used. Node will fit best for standalone bird towers using a mast. Area fits well, if a conglomerate of towers has been deployed.
Here's an example for barn swallows:
man_made=mast tower:type=birds_nest birds_nest=barn_swallow material=wood capacity=44 name=Liberty City Swallow Hotel
As similar towers are being erected for swifts, a proper adaption may be:
man_made=mast tower:type=birds_nest birds_nest=common_swift material=metal capacity=36 name=Liberty City Swift Lodging
For white storks, the tagging may be
The agricultural and environmental analysis company AGROFOR specialized on manufacturing swallows towers. The company states that around 300 of their masts have been deployed to date.
The German newspaper Südwestpresse constitutes that some villages in southern Germany mounted swallows towers, and that another 20 towers are scheduled to be erected.
The German Wikipedia article about swallows refers to swallows towers that are deployed since the 1980s in Germany.
Please comment on the discussion page.
-  Article Schwalbenhaus, Wikipedia, retrieved on 2016-09-29
-  Article about swift towers, Lausitzer Rundschau, retrieved on 2016-09-29
-  Website about swallows protection, AGROFOR, retrieved on 2016-09-29
-  Newspaper article about swallows towers in southern Germany, Südwestpresse, retrieved on 2016-09-29
-  Wikipedia article about swallows, retrieved on 2016-09-29