For anyone not convinced that wind turbines do kill raptors, watch this:
For anyone not convinced that wind turbines do kill raptors, watch this:
There is a huge area of wind turbines in Zafarana on the Red Sea coast about 100 kilometres south of Suez. The last time we drove past a few weeks ago, there were crows picking at the carcass of large, unidentifiable bird lying at the base of a turbine near the road. Wind turbines certainly kill.
I have just discovered that the footage I posted above was taken in Lendas, South Crete, but I don't know when.
It is the actual sound of the blade-bird collision and then the realisation that the bird was not killed outright which makes this all the more sickening.
And that was just one wind turbine and one bird - do the maths!!
A wind farm is being proposed with THIRTY turbines in West Norfolk at locations where pink-footed geese flocks can be seen in the winter.
There is a risk pink-feet may fly into the turbines.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1RcTj...video_response (see comments - date is also in there). I also think the sound has been edited - the crack seems to have been added as there is little sound from the turbine yet you can hear a radius and ulna breaking at about 100m away. That seems implausible.
Just imagine how many Redwings, Fieldfares and God knows what else is being knocked out by those huge arrays off the East Coast right now. The gulls and fish will have them before they're ever washed up.
An estimate has been made here http://www.informaworld.com/smpp/con...ent=a911771333 which attributes 16.5-21.5 bird deaths per turbine per year, with smaller passerines under-recorded. By that estimation, the two Thames arrays alone (441 turbines) will kill an average of 8379 large-medium sized birds per year (under-estimating smaller passerines, which makes up the bulk of migrants and probably the bulk of 'bird traffic' - e.g. finches, thrushes, crests). The RSPB backs the Thames array schemes.
And the even better news is that we're subsidising it and it doesn't even work in solving our energy crisis. There are plans for massive expansion and thousands of new offshore turbines off the East Coast, including the Wash, where the 400,000 waders will presumably just dodge around them.
Last edited by mafting; November 1st, 2009 at 01:59 PM.
Thought I would throw this in as being interesting, and relevant in view of mafting's comments:
From: mark duchamp [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: 19 October 2009 07:07
To: mark duchamp
Subject: Press release : RSPB causing harm to birds across Europe
The Red Kite International Symposium took place Saturday 17th and Sunday
18th in Montbéliard, France.
Contrary to delegates from Germany, Italy, France, and Spain, RSPB members
downplayed the risk that wind farms represent for the survival of the Red
Kite in Europe.
Whereas a German government-funded study recommends a setback of 1 to 2 km
between wind turbines and red kites' nests and roosting places (my own
recommendation is 3 km), an ornithologist from the RSPB argued that at the
Braes of Doune windfarm in Scotland, the consultant had found that the red
kites were avoiding the windfarm.
Since a red kite had collided with a turbine before their research started,
this would imply that Scottish red kites are able to learn to avoid
windfarms. This would also imply that red kites in the rest of Europe are
more stupid, because they get killed in large numbers : in Germany, the
estimate is 200-300 red-kite/wind-turbine collisions per year, and in
Italian valleys where windfarms have been installed they have almost
disappeared entirely (relief and the use of declivity winds may explain the
higher mortality as compared to Germany).
It is not the first time that Scottish ornithologists try and convince the
world that, in Scotland, windfarms and birds enjoy a special relationship.
In previous years a similar theory had been aired regarding Scottish eagles
: it was supposedly possible to teach them to avoid wind farms through land
management (plus un-sustainable assisted feeding, but that was not told).
At the time I replied to that wild allegation by denouncing the flaws in the
study that supported the claim. I also published an article providing
evidence of a cover-up regarding eagle/windrarm mortality in Scotland:
So, suspicious about the Braes and Doune study, which espouses so well the
desires of the government, the wind industry, and their de facto marketing
agent (the RSPB), I asked who was the consultant.
- Natural Research Ltd.
I knew them well, so I could not help but ask : is it not strange that
according to their study, the Scottish red kites are the only ones in Europe
smart enough to learn to avoid wind farms ? And is it not remarkable that
the same consultant, Natural Research Ltd ,seems to be landing most of the
contracts regarding the delicate matter of the windfarms' effects on raptors
? Does this not suggest that the wind industry, which finances the studies,
is particularly happy with the way Natural Research Ltd downplays the
raptor/windfarm collision risk in all of their reports, while hard data
coming from across the world prove that raptor mortality is substantial to
the point of affecting entire populations ? ( e.g. the latest report from
California by Dr Smallwood et al. 2009, or that by Estación Biológica de
Doñana, 2009, or another by SEO-Birdlife Spain, 2009).
The RSPB is now preparing a Species Action Plan for the Red Kite in the EU,
in which windfarms are listed as a potential problem that needs watching,
but nothing more. There are no recommendations for a setback, for
restrictive guidelines, not even for cumulative mortality studies.
The RSPB, through its "love affair" with windfarms, is thus not only
condemning biodiversity in the UK (eagles and red kites in particular), but
in the rest of Europe as well. Because once are installed thousands of wind
turbines in eagle and red kite territories, there is no turning back.
Extinction will be inevitable.
Considering that the charity's declared objective is to protect birds, this
is somewhat disturbing.
Note : my Power Point presentation to the Symposium is available upon
request (it weighs 9 Mb). My full paper will be available later on.
Director, Iberica 2000
President, Save the Eagles International
Perhaps this goes some way to answering the question of why the RSPB is pro wind farms:
They have a business relationship with an energy company that are investing heavily in wind farms. In short, they make money out of wind farms.
Last edited by mafting; November 1st, 2009 at 05:46 PM.
My wife and I resigned our long-standing membership last month and are also changing our wills in favour of a more deserving cause.
P.S. Always regretted that the dreadful "Birds" magazine (we get two copies, having retained our individual memberships rather a joint or family membership) is printed on such glossy paper as I always wanted to wipe ..............
I'm not sure you can call them ineffectual either - their effect seems to be increasing (development/planning, reintroductions, reserves, media appearances, overseas purchases/campaigns). They are becoming almost unilateral and monopolistic in their approach to birds in the UK, and broadened their remit, as they do not need to form campaigning alliances with anyone these days, such is the power they wield due to the size of their membership and their successful lobbying. I remember that 20 years ago they were unable to get a ban on the wild bird trade into Britain, yet now they can tip the balance in planning applications (even when against Govt policy, cf the Lewis wind farm - incidently one has to question the independence of an orgainsation's objections against wind farm developments by a competitor of one of its business associates).
A natural consequence of an increasing philosophical, commercial and political position is that it will increasingly conflict with the opinions and values of some people who would otherwise have been happy to be members of an organisation that runs reserves and campaigns on a well-defined agenda (bird protection and conservation). The RSPB seems to be following Greenpeace into a situation where its research and lobbying is getting harder to accept as objective (compared to the relative position of e.g. the BTO and the Wildlife Trusts), as it seems to be increasingly led by ideology rather than science. As an example, it publicly threw its weight behind wind farms well before enough research had been carried out on their effects and relative merit. Having a decent magazine helps too!
Last edited by mafting; November 1st, 2009 at 09:23 PM.
As an aside, it was bird flu (H5N1) that got the ban on the wild bird trade in place in Britain, not any conservation organisation at allI remember that 20 years ago they were unable to get a ban on the wild bird trade into Britain