Responses of birds and mammals to long-established wind farms in India

Kumara, HN and Babu, S and Rao, G Babu and Mahanto, Santhanu and Bhattacharya, Malyashri and Rao, Nithin Venkatesh Ranga and Tamilinian, D and Parengal, Harif and Deepak, D and Balakrishnan, Athira and Bilaskar, Mahesh (2022) Responses of birds and mammals to long-established wind farms in India. Scientific Reports, 12 (1339).

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Abstract: Wind turbines have been recognised as an alternative and clean-energy source with a low environmental impact. The selection of sites for wind-farm often creates serious conservation concerns on biodiversity. Wind turbines have become a serious threat to migratory birds as they collide with the turbine blades in some regions across the globe, while the impact on terrestrial mammals is relatively less explored. In this context, we assessed the responses of birds and mammals to the wind turbines in central Karnataka, India from January 2016 to May 2018 using carcass searches to quantify animal collisions (i.e., birds and bats), fxed radius point count for bird population parameters, and an occupancy framework for assessing the factor that determines the spatial occurrence of terrestrial mammals. The mean annual animal fatality rate per wind turbine was 0.26/year. Species richness, abundance, and unique species of birds were relatively higher in control sites over wind turbine sites. Species and functional compositions of birds in control sites were diferent from wind turbine sites, explaining the varied patterns of bird assemblages of diferent feeding guilds. Blackbuck, Chinkara, Golden Jackal, and Jungle Cat were less likely to occupy sites with a high number of wind turbines. The study indicates that certain bird and mammal species avoided wind turbine-dominated sites, afecting their distribution pattern. This is of concern to the management of the forested areas with wind turbines. We raised conservation issues and mitigating measures to overcome the negative efects of wind turbines on animals.
Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Copyright belongs to Authors
Keywords: Ecology, Environmental Sciences, Zoology
Subjects: Programmes > Animal Behaviour and Cognition
School of Natural and Engineering Sciences > Animal Studies
Doctoral Programme > PhD Scholar Publications
Date Deposited: 24 May 2022 11:39
Last Modified: 24 May 2022 11:39
Official URL: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-022-05159-1
Related URLs:
    Funders: Karnataka Forest Department, Bengaluru, Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Ltd (Bengaluru), National Institute of Wind Energy (Chennai)
    Projects: UNSPECIFIED
    DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-022-05159-1
    URI: http://eprints.nias.res.in/id/eprint/2276

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