Barriers to movement: modelling energetic costs of avoiding marine wind farms amongst breeding seabirds

Masden, E.A., Haydon, D.T., Fox, A.D. and Furness, R.W. (2010) Barriers to movement: modelling energetic costs of avoiding marine wind farms amongst breeding seabirds. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 60(7), pp. 1085-1091. (doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2010.01.016)

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Proposals for wind farms in areas of known importance for breeding seabirds highlight the need to understand the impacts of these structures. Using an energetic modelling approach, we examine the effects of wind farms as barriers to movement on seabirds of differing morphology. Additional costs, expressed in relation to typical daily energetic expenditures, were highest per unit flight for seabirds with high wing loadings, such as cormorants. Taking species-specific differences into account, costs were relatively higher in terns, due to the high daily frequency of foraging flights. For all species, costs of extra flight to avoid a wind farm appear much less than those imposed by low food abundance or adverse weather, although such costs will be additive to these. We conclude that adopting a species-specific approach is essential when assessing the impacts of wind farms on breeding seabird populations, to fully anticipate the effects of avoidance flights.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Haydon, Professor Daniel and Furness, Professor Robert
Authors: Masden, E.A., Haydon, D.T., Fox, A.D., and Furness, R.W.
Subjects:G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Q Science > QL Zoology
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Biodiversity, One Health & Veterinary Medicine
Journal Name:Marine Pollution Bulletin
ISSN (Online):1879-3363
Published Online:25 February 2010

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