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Thursday, 30 December 2010

Bats and Windfarms

I heard recently that bats can be killed by windturbines. The low pressure near the blades causes their lungs to fill with blood and explode. I have never come across this before and wonder if it is a problem in this country, or just America where this New Scientist video reports from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KRqu4WiLQfk&feature=player_embedded

5 comments:

Philip said...

I regularly see bats in urban habitats in Todmorden but I have no idea if they fly on the moors.
Maybe when it is windy enough for the turbines, bats would not frequent the moors as insects would not be abundant. But this is just speculation; does anyone have any knowledge of this?

Bruce said...

An interesting point Philip. I cannot remember seeing bats on the moors. Maybe insects are attracted to the blades glinting in moonlight?
Its a disturbing finding though and another reason to scrap them.

Philip said...

A link to the BBC earth news http://news.bbc.co.uk/earth/hi/earth_news/newsid_9067000/9067721.stm
This report says that at some individual windfarm sites in England, there are 20 to 40 bats killed each year per turbine.

Insects are attracted to the grey and white blades. Purple blades would attract the least insects.

Philip said...

This report out today says hundreds of rare bats are killed each year by turbines and directing radar beams could scare them away from feeding sites near turbines.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/earthnews/5846348/Radar-could-prevent-bats-being-killed-on-wind-turbines.html

Philip said...

Also a study found that 90% of birds killed near turbines were killed by the sudden change in air pressure which explodes their blood vessels. Source Daily Mail 15th Oct 2010