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Keep The Top Up: Study Finds Birds Target Red Cars

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Visitors gather to admire a Ferrari car on display at an auto show in southwest China's Chongqing municipality on June 9, 2011. (credit: STR/AFP/Getty Images)

Visitors gather to admire a Ferrari car on display at an auto show in southwest China’s Chongqing municipality on June 9, 2011. (credit: STR/AFP/Getty Images)

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ATLANTA (CBS Atlanta) — Better not put the top down if you’re driving a red car.

According to a study conducted by Halfords, a British automotive company, birds most often target red cars when doing their business.

The company analyzed 1,140 cars across five cities – Brighton, Bristol, Glasgow, Leeds and Manchester – over the course of two days.

Researchers found crimson cars topped the number of bird droppings at 18 percent. Birds targeted blue cars 14 percent of the time. Black cars at 11 percent, white at 7 percent, silver at 3 percent and green at 1 percent rounded out the list.

“This research does have a serious side because the problem annoys drivers, causes damaged paintwork and affects the value of vehicles,” David Howells, car cleaning expert for Halfords, said in the study. “To protect your bodywork from damage, droppings should be carefully cleaned off as soon as possible.”

Only 17 percent of those affected took immediate action when birds pooped on their cars.

The British Trust for Ornithology believes the study is flawed and that birds are not targeting one particular color of car.

“We do know that birds can be attracted to certain colours during display but it [droppings on cars] is probably more to do with where you park; if you park where birds roost, then you are going to get more droppings on your vehicle,” a spokesman for the group said in the study.

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