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GPS tracking data can document wind turbine interactions: evidence from a GPS-tagged Eurasian curlew

Abstract : The Eurasian Curlew is an endangered long-lived shorebird breeding in grassland and moorland, with declining numbers across its range due to habitat loss and former hunting. In this context, any additional adult mortality can have a noticeable impact on population dynamics, hence on extinction risk. We report a case of a GPS-tagged individual which track revealed an unusual stopover at the bottom of a wind turbine along its migration route. The curlew rested hours in an unfavourable environment before moving to the adjacent coastal shore, then completed its migration journey the next day. In previous studies, GPS-tags helped to identify death casualties at wind farms, but to our knowledge this is the first detailed report of a non-lethal injury of a tagged animal by a wind turbine, probably by the vortex of rotors. This case alerts on the further potential impacts of wind farm development close to breeding, wintering and stopover sites frequented by Eurasian curlews and other birds. Any wind farm development project should consider the opportunity to avoid, reduce or compensate potential lethal and non-lethal impacts on wildlife.
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Contributor : Frédéric JIGUET Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Friday, November 19, 2021 - 1:47:52 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, May 18, 2022 - 11:20:05 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Sunday, February 20, 2022 - 7:00:46 PM


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Frédéric Jiguet, Philipp Schwemmer, Pierre Rousseau, Pierrick Bocher. GPS tracking data can document wind turbine interactions: evidence from a GPS-tagged Eurasian curlew. Forensic Science International: Animals and Environments, Elsevier, 2021, 1, ⟨10.1016/j.fsiae.2021.100036⟩. ⟨mnhn-03436521⟩



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