Bats and wind energy
Drake, David Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin.
- Wind energy and turbines
- Impact on bats
- Possible solutions
- Links to Primary Literature
- Additional Readings
Humans have harnessed the wind for centuries. In the United States and elsewhere, as a result of the desire for energy independence and renewed interest in renewable energy sources, industrial wind energy facilities have been on the rise. Although wind energy is promoted as “green” energy, bat mortality has been documented at industrial wind energy facilities as a result of turbine operation, raising concerns about the effects on flying wildlife. Common trends in the data include types of bats killed at wind farms and time-of-year bat mortality peaks, and scientists are gaining a better understanding about how bats are killed as a result of wind energy. However, the reason for why bats are getting killed continues to elude researchers. Because of relatively little demographic knowledge of bat populations, as well as recent disease stressors increasing bat mortality, questions persist about the level of bat mortality resulting from wind energy relative to the sustainability of bat populations.
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