On Monday, the bird protection organization called for greater consideration of endangered species in the expansion of renewable energies.

The eagle named “Johannes” grew up in Northern Burgenland and received a satellite transmitter from the bird protection organization there at the end of June 2021. After small excursions in the vicinity of his parents’ nest, according to the broadcast, he started his first major trip at the beginning of October, which took him to the area of ​​Dukovany in the Czech Republic for a few days. On October 12th we went back home, from Laa an der Thaya 55 kilometers to the south-southwest. The young animal flew into a wind turbine in the eastern Weinviertel. The bird was watched around the clock and its last journey could be fully traced.

Four imperial eagles were reportedly killed in collisions with wind turbines in the past two years. A total of seven cases are known in this country. “This corresponds to more than a fifth of all imperial eagles found dead in Austria and is therefore the second most common documented cause of death,” said BirdLife Austria. Around a third of all animals of the endangered species discovered lifeless in this country are victims of deliberate hunting or the use of poison.

“Even if the expansion of renewable energy is a crucial part of the solution to cope with the climate crisis, this should not be done at the expense of biodiversity,” emphasized Matthias Schmidt, bird of prey expert at BirdLife Austria. The impact of the use of wind power on the bird world is often underestimated: “The use of wind power affects some species, which are often very sensitive in terms of nature conservation, disproportionately and can pose a serious problem for their protection, such as for the imperial eagle with its very filigree population of only 30 breeding pairs. “

It is important to consider biodiversity and bird life in particular when expanding wind farms in the future. “Existing zoning, including their exclusion zones, must remain in place for wind power. For new locations, well-founded surveys are required that allow a serious assessment and are carried out independently.” In order to promote uniform standards in the approval process, BirdLife Austria has drawn up guidelines for the natural planning of wind power plants. Now the organization sees authorities and operators on the train.

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