Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Wind Farms And Waterfowl...Not Much Effect

Ducks don't particularly like nesting around them:

One nesting site had a 56-percent lower breeding pair density than a similar site with no wind turbines. Overall, the number of breeding ducks using wetlands near the wind farms was 20 percent lower than in wetlands with no wind development nearby.

But on the other hand, they will if they have to.

In even better news, turbines don't kill too many of them during breeding season:

“Females get involved in some pretty territorial courtship flights and we hypothesized that they tend to be less aware of their surroundings during this period. Basically, we wanted to know if they were vulnerable to flying into the path of a turbine blade,” says [Tanner] Gue. “Because female survival during the breeding season is a strong population driver, we focused on females.”

Of the 165 birds marked, just one mallard died after being struck by a blade. Gue and fellow researchers also monitored 145 teal and mallards on a nearby site that did not have windmills.

“We wanted to compare overall mortality rates to see if wind development might lead to higher rates of predation. It turned out mortality rates were pretty similar,” he says.

So there you have it.

8 comments:

Jim Wiegand said...

Since the wind industry does such a disgraceful job looking for fatalities, the fact that they found one dead, most likely means that at least 20 were killed.

Paul Kuster said...

I find it interesting that this ENTIRE article is up at Wind Concerns Ont. So yes folks, please read the whole thing as it's still a damning indictment on this silly industry that gives us nothing except environmental carnage and empty wallets.

Laura Griffin said...

Can you say "cherry picking to fit one's agenda"? Why not post the entire article BCL and let people make up their own minds?

bigcitylib said...

The most negative bit of the article is included.

Paul Kuster said...

No, actually just one of the more damning paragraphs would be these;

Researchers don’t know the long-term impact on waterfowl staging and feeding areas and migratory paths, either. That’s why Long Point Waterfowl executive director Dr. Scott Petrie is frustrated with the lack of cooperation from wind energy companies. He works on the Canadian side of lakes Ontario, Erie and St. Clair, an important staging and wintering region for waterfowl in the midst of a wind energy boom.

An outspoken critic of the poorly-regulated rush to build towers, Petrie thinks the Ontario government and private companies need to step back and evaluate the potential effects of wind projects. Ontario has lost upwards of 85 percent of its coastal wetlands and is at risk of losing more. Right now, 2 percent of the province’s energy comes from wind. However, a push by the provincial government aims to increase the output to 20 percent. The best wind resources are located along the marshes and farmland adjacent to the Great Lakes, the same areas used by migrating waterfowl.

Actually now the amount is 3 percent but the song remains the same. Read it all.

bigcitylib said...

Petrie's stuff is content free.

Paul Kuster said...

You're right, He hasn't done much.

http://longpointwaterfowl.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/Petrie-CV-Feb-2012-1.pdf

Paul Kuster said...

It appears ducks aren't the only birds affected by wind turbines;

http://www.lfpress.com/2013/06/14/concerns-about-costs-of-demolition-and-if-chatham-kent-is-responsible

You can't make this stuff up even though liberals never cease to amaze.