Abstract:

Stringing South Africa’s Terrestrial Birds Along – Monitoring of Bird Interactions with Power Lines and the Experimental Testing of Bird Collision Mitigation at the Karoo Long Term Monitoring Site

Jon J Smallie, Andrew R Jenkins, Jessica M Shaw, Megan Diamond

Endangered Wildlife Trust, Private Bag X11, Modderfontein, 1645

Research on the impacts of power lines on wildlife internationally is generally of a poor standard, lacking in accurate, long-term, quantitative information, convertible to incident rates which can be passively or experimentally compared on a spatial or temporal basis. This applies particularly to the South African situation, in which the critically affected taxa are suspected, but the relative scale of impacts is unknown, and the management of perceived negative impacts has been mainly reactionary, largely driven by accumulated, incidental data, and implemented with little, if any, empirical testing. During 2008, the importance of establishing a network of long-term, intensive monitoring sites, situated in areas and habitats where levels of wildlife – power line interactions are highest was recognised.  This project collected accurate, representative data on wildlife:power line interaction rates at a number of fixed, strategically selected, long-term monitoring sites.
The second phase of the project, used a structured, experimental approach to fully evaluate which of the currently available bird:power line collision mitigation devices – including both static and dynamic options is most effective across the full spectrum of implicated taxa and environmental conditions.  This work was carried out at the long term monitoring site in the Karoo region of South Africa as this is an established site and has accumulated three years of ‘before’ data on unmarked, experimental lines.

Presentation Topic

Stringing South Africa’s Terrestrial Birds Along – Monitoring of Bird Interactions with Power Lines and the Experimental Testing of Bird Collision Mitigation at the Karoo Long Term Monitoring Site

 

Contact Mrs Diamond:

Endangered Wildlife Trust, Private Bag X11, Modderfontein, 1645

 

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