BIRD STRIKE MONITORING OF WIND TURBINES IN WEST SUSSEX
The Ecology Partnership were commissioned to undertake bird strike monitoring of wind turbines in a coastal town in West Sussex. This work is part of a 3-year monitoring scheme to determine whether the newly constructed wind turbines will have any impacts on birds in the local vicinity and to suggest any additional mitigation measures if necessary.
The monitoring strategy consists of two survey methods, bird strike surveys and vantage point surveys. Twice a year in the spring and autumn, our ecologists will search the area surrounding the turbines for any bird remains as well as consulting with local businesses in the vicinity of the turbines to collect any reports of collisions. At the same time, the flight paths of birds will be observed from a suitable vantage point in order to determine if there are any species at risk of collision.
All wild bird species are protected in the UK and therefore it is important to understand potential impacts on bird populations arising from both individual development schemes as well as cumulatively. At present, there is still uncertainty about the potential impact of wind farms on many species, including birds. This is partly due to limited or inadequate post-construction monitoring and therefore a lack of meaningful long-term data. Therefore, more monitoring schemes like this are needed in order to contribute to our understanding and integrate possible mitigation strategies into future wind farm developments.