Hotline for improved bird protection

RGI and the German branch of BirdLife ("NABU") launched an initiative in October to improve the information basis for bird protection measures for new and existing power lines.  A hotline allows everyone to report the finding of a dead bird to NABU where an ornithologist collects and analyses the obtained information.

Birds are exposed to a variety of risks. By far the biggest and most complex risk results from the intensified use and changes made to bird habitats by humans. In addition to this, there are direct risks which affect almost all European bird species to a different degree. This includes that birds are being hunted, that they become the prey of cats, hit windows, get caught by the slipstream of heavy transport vehicles or that they collide with overhead power lines.

NABU and German transmission system operators have been working on reducing the collision risk for birds for years. They do this especially by installing so-called bird protection markers at critical sections of power lines. Moreover, sensitive bird populations are considered early on in the development of new power lines. The idea of the hotline was developed to be able to identify critical line sections even faster and build upon the insights in future planning processes. For the first time, NABU and the involved grid operators jointly and systematically collect data to improve the information base upon which they identify where there is a need to act and what is the right approach to increase bird protection.