The Danger to Birds

“You’ve got to keep birds and turbines apart”

When we walk or run, we look ahead to check for obstacles. Birds are used to flying in wide open skies. They look mostly sideways, above and behind to hunt and see predators. Straight ahead is their blind spot. Put an industrial wind turbine in the bird’s way and you may end up with a dead bird – particularly during migration.

That’s what three British researchers discovered when they studied vultures. “Across Africa and southern Europe, vultures have become frequent casualties of collisions with wind farms,” says one of the researchers, Dr. Steven Portugal of the Royal Veterinary College. “The speed of the rotating blade doesn’t help. You can paint them with bright stripes or hang things off them, but that won’t be effective. You’ve got to keep the birds and the turbines apart.”

In a major migratory bird flyway, like the one which includes Prince Edward County and Wolfe Island, the toll will be particularly high. That’s what science is telling us.

vulture

Vultures cannot “adapt” to wind turbines because they mostly look down for their next meal.


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