Whitelee Ornithological Surveys
Scottish Power Renewables
ScottishPower Renewables commissioned RPS to carry out bird surveys at Whitelee wind farm.
Whitelee was the largest wind farm in Europe when it was completed in 2009. Following the Environmental Statement, a Habitat Management Plan (HMP) was implemented to co-ordinate the protection, enhancement and creation of habitats of conservation importance within the site, with a particular focus on the habitats and species that may potentially be adversely affected by the wind farm.
The purpose of the 2010-11 surveys was to:
Determine the number, location and outcome of breeding attempts by scarce raptors and owls
Assess the use of the HMA by black grouse and red grouse in spring
Determine the distribution and abundance of common breeding birds within the open ground habitats in the HMA, including the areas deforested to accommodate the wind farm and assess the abundance of the important raptor prey species – skylark, meadow pipit and field vole
Annual reports were produced which highlighted changes in the populations of key species since the construction of the wind farm.