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Author Topic: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!  (Read 2207 times)

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Offline chain

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Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« on: December 08, 2013, 11:29:54 AM »
Wind farms kill an estimated 600,000 birds each year, many are American Bald Eagles. Our government just approved a Bill to permit the killing of our National bird for next thirty years.

Green energy makes killing of eagles A-okay? >:(

Offline clww

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #1 on: December 08, 2013, 11:58:12 AM »
Maybe those that make it will add to a smarter species in the long run?
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Offline Jeff

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #2 on: December 08, 2013, 12:01:41 PM »
Maybe I better take out our living room window too. That one window kills an estimated half dozen birds a year alone.
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Offline thecfarm

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #3 on: December 08, 2013, 02:07:26 PM »
I wonder too,who is doing the counting?  ::)
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Offline chain

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #4 on: December 08, 2013, 02:12:15 PM »
Our National bird is to be honored, protected, of all risks. I know of a farmer sent to prison for inadvertently killing of a Bald Eagle; no less than a Presidential Pardon released the fellow. He was just trying to protect his crop.

For myself, I feel the eagle should be protected, meaning of course, the wind farms can figure out how to protect the birds or face a stiff fine and imprisonment. Just as the Feds would likely do to me for 'accidentally' destroying an eagle.




Offline Jeff

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #5 on: December 08, 2013, 02:30:30 PM »
So what is the actual number on eagles killed to sort it from the hype? 

 I can tell you I saw 6 mature eagles and one immature take off of a deer carcass two weeks ago when I turned the corner just down from the cabin. I was only 50 feet away from them. We've had them circling the pigroast here in Harrison along with some buzzards one year too.  There are getting to be a lot of Eagles which means there has to be a lot of eagles dying and getting killed somewhere as well. They don't live forever.   Odds of hitting an eagle with a car in our part of the U.P. may be as good as hitting a deer.
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Offline pineywoods

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #6 on: December 08, 2013, 02:34:32 PM »
If the politicians had listened to ole Ben Franklin, there wouldn't be a problem. He wanted the national bird to be a wild turkey, for some pretty good reasons, and considered the eagle to be just a high class scavenger..
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Offline thecfarm

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #7 on: December 08, 2013, 02:36:16 PM »
Growing up here I never saw an eagle. First one was about 13 years ago and see them around the pond now quite often.
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Offline chain

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #8 on: December 08, 2013, 02:40:21 PM »
I don't know but us humans may be listed as scavengers.

 :D

Offline POSTON WIDEHEAD

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2013, 03:34:52 PM »
The Turkey was almost made our national Bird.

So we could be having Eagle on Thanksgiving.  food2
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Offline chain

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #10 on: December 08, 2013, 04:54:59 PM »
If the politicians had listened to ole Ben Franklin, there wouldn't be a problem. He wanted the national bird to be a wild turkey, for some pretty good reasons, and considered the eagle to be just a high class scavenger..

And consider, the 101st Airborne would have had a turkey as a shoulder patch, not!

Department of Interior counting dead eagles, kept the count under 100 at one windstorm facility. Forgot to count at another wind farm.

The point is, there are folks out there that will destroy about anything for greed. This is big-time greed and big time Federal $$ involved in wind farms. My opinion only.

Offline submarinesailor

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #11 on: December 08, 2013, 07:41:05 PM »
Take a look at this article.  It is the America Wind Energy Associations reply to the AP's.

http://www.aweablog.org/blog/post/what-ap-left-out-of-its-latest-story-on-eagles-and-wind-power

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Offline SPIKER

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #12 on: December 08, 2013, 09:59:29 PM »
Yep Ole Ben Franklin wanted the Turkey to be federal bird.   Not sure on the wind farms killing birds guess it does happen now many I dont know but the wind currents are exactly what birds like to use to pick up altitude and speed with those air currents...

I would think if they are hit with wing tip (read someplace that wind mill blade speed is near 600MPH at full wind speed cutout on some bigger blades.)   It would maybe damage the blade but sure would do some damage to the birds...

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Offline m wood

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #13 on: December 08, 2013, 10:09:55 PM »
I guess if I would just stop driving my pickup with a V8 and convinced all the other drivers also, then started burning candles in my home and pulled the plug on the grid and convinced all other households to do the same...perhaps we could reduce the consumption of coal in power generating plants.  We could undo the damage of green house gasses on the environment while we were at it.  Clean power generation in the Pacific Northwest nearly wiped out the historical salmon spawning grounds, starting more than 70 years ago.  We humans ARE a scavenging species in a sense.  Progress and population explosion has always resulted in our trying to balance our impact on nature, but usually only after a lot of damage has been done.  By simply coexisting on the same planet as humans, the eagle population will suffer.  But I am sorry, I'm not willing to throw the wind/power generating industry under the bus if attempts are being made to assist the bird casualty rate.  I am no more a proponent for wind than I am an opponent for coal.  I use them all. 

the salmon run issues were addressed by the hydro electric industry at a sizable cost to taxpayers and the population is bouncing back.  Scrubbers are installed to the tune of billions by that power generating industry so as to improve air quality, and I would guess the tax payers pay for that as well.  I believe wind energy will help this nation...so will the proposed massive solar farms...so will nuclear power, and the tidal power plants, etc etc etc.

IMO, if we dont want to go without we better learn to like something about them all.  they're not going away   

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Offline terry f

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #14 on: December 08, 2013, 11:34:04 PM »
   I think the word is collateral damage, and the numbers aren't too high. Limiting DDT and lead shot has brought lots of critters back from the brink. The return of the California Condor is a true American success story, no matter how much it cost. M wood, over a million Chinook return in the Columbia this year, another success story, whether you fish or not.

Offline chain

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #15 on: December 09, 2013, 07:37:44 AM »
Well, let's face it..there's nothing sacred anymore, Big Brother rules, we're running from our Founding Fathers Constitution as fast as we can. Less than a carload of folks make all our decisions... usually for money and politics.


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Offline Chuck White

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #16 on: December 09, 2013, 08:07:15 AM »
I've never seen a wind turbin turn fast enough to where a bird (any bird) would be unable to see the individual blades, and avoid them.  I find it hard to believe that the wind turbins would turn fast like the prop on an airplane!

Also, when something "man made" is entered into nature, the creatures all get used to it being there and don't panic anymore.
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Offline chain

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #17 on: December 09, 2013, 08:27:48 AM »
Someone said 600 mph, but I read another report where the speed of the prop tip was between 200-300 mph. Surely an average could be estimated; I'm assuming many birds killed at night during migration.

But the eagle, as what I've witnessed doesn't back off from much, as possibly the bird may notice the tip moving up thinking it is another challenging eagle and ..smack! it's all over.

Offline ely

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #18 on: December 09, 2013, 10:03:26 AM »
maybe we should set up a processing plant if that many birds are dying from impact..... no need to waste the meat... first page and it done went to food.

Offline Gary_C

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #19 on: December 09, 2013, 11:43:39 AM »
Wind farms kill an estimated 600,000 birds each year, many are American Bald Eagles.


What are many? 5, 10, 100, 1000?   

I'd like to see actual numbers from reputable organizations before I got too excited about this.

If we really want to protect the eagles, we must keep them away from the road kill deer laying along the highways. But that's their major food supply.
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Offline chain

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #20 on: December 09, 2013, 01:29:12 PM »
According to who you want to believe as far as eagle kill. ???

I've read several news releases; the Bird people have their estimates, Dept. Interior have theirs, and Wind Farm folks also. Seems a discrepancy in numbers and length of time in months, years. One source says the Feds were encouraged by the Administration to line up with the Wind Farm people. Birders not so agreeable saying one Wind Farm was completely left off the kill-tally.

The whole problem with me is the 30 year permit to allow crippling, killing of eagles and other protected fowl. Birders say there are two other Federal Laws in place protecting eagles that were circumvented by the new law, they intend to challenge through the courts.

Another theory quite possibly lending to the issue, is, the windmills create a vortex or suction that can cause birds to be be pulled into the props increasing the kill. One enterprising fellow proposed another design for the mills that would not interfere with birds, and would take less wind power to operate. Interesting.

Offline OLD MAN GRINDER

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #21 on: December 09, 2013, 02:45:09 PM »
I don't have a problem with wind power and green energy in general, just the
hypocracy involved, seems like the current admin is against all carbon based
energy, and the truth is we need both, seems to me if we can put a man on
the moon we can find a way to burn coal cleanly until we can get more of the
green energy projects perfected, the same with oil and natural gas, we need
them all at the present time....


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Offline m wood

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #22 on: December 09, 2013, 04:26:01 PM »
Yes chain there are sacred things left in the world, the outstanding eagle is among them.  I just am trying to view a larger picture. One species is probably not going extinct because of commercial wind turbines.  And yes, each and every eagle is an awesome thing and worth trying to save individually, but face it, we arent going to change each and every thing about ourselves and our society to stop the collateral damage.  Nobody is slaughtering them intentially.  I am excited to see where the green initiative takes us.  I hope another administration can acually manage it better than this one.  My big hope for the future is to quit (at least reduce) importing crude from the middle east.  That would change the face of foreign affairs and politics as we know it.

Have I steered this thread away from outdoor topics yet! ::)
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Offline Mooseherder

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #23 on: December 09, 2013, 05:27:10 PM »
This is one of the blades from the Mars Hill wind farm.
Swampdonkey can see them from his yard. A six foot tall person can stand in that opening where it attaches to the rotor.
You would think the size, noise and wind from them would repel and deter not attract.  Just saying.



 
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Offline thecfarm

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #24 on: December 09, 2013, 05:36:51 PM »
Never been that far North to see Mars Hill,but I have seen the ones in Roxbury. I have no idea how fast the blades are turning,but I can see them turning,they appear to be moving slow the times that I have been there.
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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #25 on: December 09, 2013, 07:46:21 PM »
Did a bit more looking at the normal operating range for the average blade speed is around 200MPH blade tip speed.   the swept area is now ~1 to 1.5acres :o that is pretty big blades.   There seems to be some good info available on line on the subject of the bird kills as well.
This looks like the 600 mph blade speed tho

<iframe width="420" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/QL-cRuYAxg0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QL-cRuYAxg0

The page 3 here PDF has raptor deaths per on page 3
http://www1.eere.energy.gov/wind/pdfs/birds_and_bats_fact_sheet.pdf


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Offline drobertson

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #26 on: December 09, 2013, 08:27:19 PM »
This has been a very enlightening post for me, and for now have to believe that many facts are both hidden and distorted on both sides in regards to the numbers of Eagles killed by these turbines.  It always seems that with what we call progress, there is always setbacks or downfalls to such progress.   I am sure of one thing, the killing of Eagles was not (I hope) in the original ramifications of such an endeavor of using wind turbines.
And this makes me think of the old wind mills in Holland,  did they suffer avian loss, and if so, has it been documented?  Where by lessons might be learned,    david
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Offline pineywoods

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #27 on: December 09, 2013, 09:11:38 PM »
I find it a bit hard to believe eagles are just flying headlong into a blade that size. Think about this... Those blades are the same thing as an airplane wing, a large one, it just happens to be bolted to a big hub rather than a fuselage. Any lightplane pilot will tell you that there are violent tornado-like vortices spilling off the wingtips of large planes. They are violent enough to cause structural failure of a light plane flying into them. Any bird, especially a large soaring type, that flies into one of these invisible vortices is gonna be tossed about like a leaf, possibly right into the path of a following blade,or slammed violently into the ground. 
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Offline OLD MAN GRINDER

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #28 on: December 09, 2013, 11:26:03 PM »
I find it a bit hard to believe eagles are just flying headlong into a blade that size. Think about this... Those blades are the same thing as an airplane wing, a large one, it just happens to be bolted to a big hub rather than a fuselage. Any lightplane pilot will tell you that there are violent tornado-like vortices spilling off the wingtips of large planes. They are violent enough to cause structural failure of a light plane flying into them. Any bird, especially a large soaring type, that flies into one of these invisible vortices is gonna be tossed about like a leaf, possibly right into the path of a following blade,or slammed violently into the ground.

According to what i have read that is exactly what is happening....


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Offline terry f

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #29 on: December 10, 2013, 04:41:10 AM »
   No burning carbon, nothing harmful left in the eco system, don't think anybody's getting sick and haven't heard of any acid rain, just jobs and lots of power, looks like a win win.

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #30 on: December 10, 2013, 10:42:56 AM »
   No burning carbon, nothing harmful left in the eco system, don't think anybody's getting sick and haven't heard of any acid rain, just jobs and lots of power, looks like a win win.

Yeah, that's the short sighted view. Totally ignores the resources required to make them monsters. Tons of carbon fiber and epoxy (oil), miles of copper wire. Priced any copper lately ? Think about an oven big enough to bake one of them blades...and the size of the mold...
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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #31 on: December 10, 2013, 11:47:58 AM »
In the name of green energy, we taxpayers have subsidized every single windmill in place.  Without enormous tax credits to the "wind farmers", they would not be built.  And the energy being produced is the most expensive available, and when fed into the grid, everyone's rates go up higher than need be.  And personally I am dissapointed that there seems to be no "off-limits" as to location. It's like the movie Field of Dreams, if there's wind - we will build it.  The scenic Columbia Gorge, wind mills built right up to the designated (by Congress) scenic area. And even our sacred Steens Mtns here in Oregon, there's a fight to keep them out, thank goodness.  And we need more?

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #32 on: December 10, 2013, 02:47:17 PM »
What about the 5000 to 6000 thousand migratory birds killed one night with a flare off at an LNG terminal in Saint John? It made national news. That number is most assuredly inflated, without an actual tally. That's a lot of birds to count or even locate for that matter.

I've always remembered eagles, but they are more common now. The biggest successful come back around here has been the osprey. And those two are competitors. They put up nest platforms for both birds along rivers, power lines and roads. Basically a telephone pole with a platform on top for them to build on.
Move'n on.

Offline chain

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #33 on: December 10, 2013, 08:25:24 PM »
But the Wind Farms now have legislation in hand that guarantees protection from prosecution no matter how many Eagles, Osprey, or what other birds they kill........ for THIRTY YEARS!

Wasn't too so long ago the Eagle was in grave danger of becoming extinct, pesticides had entered their reproduction causing their eggs to become sterile. Millions of dollars were spent to save the eagle, legislation proposed, pesticides banned..all to save out National bird, which by the way the likeness is on our USA Seal, and thousands of other items relating to America's patriotism.

Yes, we threw old Baldy under the bus, very sad.

Offline drobertson

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #34 on: December 10, 2013, 08:51:20 PM »
So true chain, What's the answer?     david
only have a few chain saws I'm not suppose to use, but will at times, one dog Dolly, pretty good dog, just not sure what for yet,  working on getting the gardening back in order, and kinda thinking on maybe a small bbq bizz,  thinking about it,

Offline Jeff

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #35 on: December 10, 2013, 09:06:34 PM »

Yes, we threw old Baldy under the bus, very sad.

I just don't see it. What I see here in Michigan, is more wind generators every year, and more Eagles than we have ever had, even in the memory of my octogenarian friends.  I believe it is simply the "economy of scale" so to speak. There are a lot more eagles, so there are more eagles dieing by accident. I'd bet that the death rate by accident % is less than its has ever been.
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Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #36 on: December 10, 2013, 09:57:11 PM »
I think the eagles will be fine. Up on Mars Hill I see flocks of migrating crows fly through ( or looks like it) them windmills every fall. I never have seen an eagle flying up there. Maybe I'll worry about the crows.  ;)

What the government giveth, she also taketh.  ;D
Move'n on.

Offline Paul_H

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #37 on: December 10, 2013, 10:26:34 PM »
My small hometown in SW BC has an annual Eagle count since the mid 80's and the count goes up and down between 1500 and 2500 annually.It's just one of many salmon river systems on the West coast of Canada.
eg  tregar  meste  på  Tulla, for  ho  var  krulla  i  ulla.

Offline chain

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #38 on: December 11, 2013, 02:36:42 AM »
I believe in working things out and I'm sure there's more being done to correct the issue than we know. A independent fact-finding commission, with five year studies may be organized, with experimental ideas to help reduce eagle mortality at the mill farms;, new designs, colors, reflectors, etc.

Jeff, apparently you folks up north and in Canada have far more eagles than here in the Mississippi Flyway. We still have "eagle days" at some Refuge's and lakes. Bus loads of folks and school children come to see the migrating eagles, "Eagle Days"are a big deal around here! Protection of Eagles is strictly enforced, all incidents of eagle deaths are seriously investigated by State wildlife officers and Feds.

Offline terry f

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #39 on: December 11, 2013, 04:32:02 AM »
   Indians are allowed to kill and posses eagles, this looks like a good way for them to get the parts they need.

Offline Cedarman

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #40 on: December 11, 2013, 09:56:32 AM »
   Indians are allowed to kill and posses eagles, this looks like a good way for them to get the parts they need.
Terry, can the natives use those birds or do they have to "take" the eagles themselves.  There are some crazy rules out there.
Good idea.
I am in the pink when sawing cedar.

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #41 on: December 11, 2013, 10:43:18 AM »
For what few they would use in the run of a year or ten years even, I wouldn't think it would make a big impact. We have natives here that like to copy others, doing stuff that was not tradition at all to their tribe. I'm no expert, but we have been among them since the 15C.
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Offline terry f

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #42 on: December 11, 2013, 01:11:49 PM »
    I believe they just need the parts, I think most road kills go that way now. I could never imagine how a person could put their sights on a eagle and pull the trigger, but it happens.

Offline Axe Handle Hound

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #43 on: December 11, 2013, 03:02:06 PM »
But the Wind Farms now have legislation in hand that guarantees protection from prosecution no matter how many Eagles, Osprey, or what other birds they kill........ for THIRTY YEARS!


Chain- I am not a huge proponent of wind energy for a number of reasons, but it's a start towards trying something new.  I do agree with you that it has negative unforeseen consequences for avian and bat species, but there are a lot of private firms and engineers out there right now trying to come up with new designs that mitigate this problem.  I would point out though that industry doesn't have a blanket authorization to kill as many of whatever species happens to fly into the blades.  It's my understanding that in order to receive protection from litigation under the Migratory Bird Species Act the developers have to work with the USFWS in advance of construction to develop a mitigation strategy that addresses potential raptor mortality rates.  If they fail to implement that plan they may very well be open to legal action.  If you do a quick Google search you'll see that Duke Energy recently paid an approximately $1MM fine for bird related deaths at one of their installations in Idaho.  The new rules were designed to create a proactive situation where the planning was done up front rather than after the fact.  It was also designed to give industry a level of protection from what appeared to be unfair litigation.  As a general rule, developers have to recieve federal permits in order to construct a wind farm and despite receiving those permits they were still potentially open to fines by those same agencies in the event a protected species was impacted. 

It's counter intuitive to think that a bird with eyesight like raptors can't avoid a giant blade and there are a lot of theories on why they end up getting killed, but the truth is they do get killed.  Numbers are thrown about by both sides and statistics can be skewed to support either argument, but neither side will say it doesn't happen.  Consider also that there are other man made structures that lead to avian mortality.  A significant contributor to raptor mortality is the power poles you see all over the landscape.  Raptors prefer these for perches and/or nesting platforms and when they spread their wings they get electrocuted.  Glass buildings built near flyways create reflections that mimic water and a substantial number of waterfowl are killed every year as a result.  Likewise, feral cats account for a huge number of bird deaths annually.  Granted, neither of the last two examples is likely to deal much with raptors so the point may be a bit outside of your original topic, but the overall idea of bird mortality due to approved human development is the same. 

Offline doctorb

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Re: Wind farms killing eagles, A---okay!
« Reply #44 on: December 11, 2013, 06:50:02 PM »
Need data.  And since I don't have any, I will say that my observations here in MD are that we have a very healthy population of Bald Eagles and Osprey.  As a kid, I rarely saw one.  Now I see them whenever and pretty much wherever I go fishing.  We are not a great "wind" state except in our Blue Ridge Mts, in the western part of the state and a new project to be built way offshore in the Atlantic.  These birds are in between those two for the most part, enjoying the streams and estuaries of the Chesapeake Bay.  We have 6 nesting osprey pairs on the lake at our summer cottage in Ontario.  While certainly accidental avian predator death at the hands of this new technology needs to be studied, and preventative measures designed, I don't think this is a huge problem as these populations have risen to very healthy levels.
My father once said, "This is my son who wanted to grow up and become a doctor.  So far, he's only become a doctor."


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