Electrocution and Collision
The Eurokite project also aims to identificate and solve the problematic cases concerning electrocution and collision.
Electrocution seems to be mostly solved in some countries (DE, partially ES), while it is still an issue in other countries, especially in the eastern part of Central Europe. A study in Albacete (Spain) showed an average of 200 bird per year, which were killed due to electrocution (SAO 2018). In total around 20 percent of the birds’ mortalities is cause by electrocution.
The activity data of the tagged birds will allow the project to analyse the habitat use and the migration flyways with a high degree of accuracy, and at levels not previously achieved. Using this data, we will identify high risk stretches of power lines for raptor collisions or electrocution in the breeding areas, the wintering areas, and along the flyways. The relevance of risks will be expressed in relation to bird presence determined from logger data against frequency of mortality events. The results of this will be used to take mitigation measures along these particular power lines to prevent or reduce future collisions by raptors. Additionally, we will use the results of other projects (LIFE-ENERGY in SK, where there is an existing classification of high risk stretches of power lines by our partner CSO in CZ).
We will install specially designed markers along the most hazardous power cables in the areas of the highest significance, and risk, for the target species of the project. The overhead power lines will be marked using bird diverters. When installed on power lines, these diverters can prevent collisions almost completely, reducing bird mortality to nearly zero levels. This safety measure was applied several times in previous LIFE projects.