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Are Wind Turbines a Threat to Birds?

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sea bird flying

While scientific studies and organization press releases are inconclusive due to bias and political intent, it is estimated that between 140,000 and 500,000 birds each year lose their lives in wind turbine accidents. It is estimated that once the green energy mandate to combat global warming takes place, up to 1.5 million birds will perish each year due to wind turbine accidents.  So, the questions about whether windmills kill birds or how many birds are killed by windmills have already been answered. Here is what else you should know about the threat of wind turbines to birds in the wild.

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Are Wind Turbines a Risk to Domestic Birds?

If you keep your domesticated birds from flying alone outside, you should never have to worry about whether wind turbines are dangerous to them. The only way that a wind turbine can be a danger to a bird is when it is flying free and does not have any direction or tether to keep them from the turbine wings. The minute that a domesticated bird flies toward a wind turbine, they are susceptible to danger from the turbine and the possibility of developing serious injuries.

The best way to keep domesticated birds from wind turbine danger is to ensure that they are not allowed to fly anywhere near them. Keep your bird indoors to fly, or make sure that your bird is on a tether whenever you spend time outside. This will help ensure that your bird does not get injured by a wind turbine or any other dangerous object that is present outside at any given time.

birds flying in winter
Image Credit: Marijs, Shutterstock

The Ongoing Threat of Wind Turbines to Wild Birds

Unfortunately, wild birds do not understand what wind turbines are. These are not objects that have existed in the wild along with birds for hundreds of years. So, where does that leave the birds?

Wild birds have no way of knowing that a wind turbine can seriously injure or kill them upon contact. They have no concept of what a wind turbine is or how it works. Therefore, there is no way to warn a wild bird of the dangers of wind turbines. We cannot possibly endeavor to save all the wild birds from wind turbine injuries and executions.

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How We Can Avoid the Threat to Wild Birds

There is not much that we can do as individuals to keep wild birds safe from wind turbines. The one thing that we can do is petition our county and state leaders to develop wind turbine farms near each other so all the turbines will be located in the same place. The more wind turbines that are present, the bigger the threat that wild birds will perceive.

With any luck, the birds will steer clear of the threat and find a safer passage of travel. Also, when wind turbines are located in the same place rather than distributed in different locations throughout a specific amount of land area, the threat to wild birds will be isolated and not be present for all birds that are traveling through the area.

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Image Credit: Piqsels

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Wind turbines are not the best option for power when it comes to keeping wild birds safe. We must ensure that wild birds survive, just as we must ensure that bees, dogs, and fish survive. If these animals do not survive, we cannot survive ourselves. It is important to get involved with our local community leaders, state leaders, and even Congress members to help ensure that wind turbines do not decimate wild birds as time goes on.

Featured Image Credit: Ian Dyball, Shutterstock

About the Author Rachael Gerkensmeyer

Since 2000, Rachael has been a freelance writer, and has had an opportunity to research and write about many different topics while working to master the art of fusing high-quality content with effective content marketing strategies. She is an artist at heart and loves to read, paint, and make jewelry in her spare time. Rachael is obsessed with helping animals in need both in her community and anywhere in the world where she feels she can make a difference. She lives off the grid in Hawaii with her husband, her garden, and her rescue animals including 5 dogs, a cat, a goat, and dozens of chickens, so it's no surprise that animals happen to be her favorite topic to write about!