Articles

Wind Power Kills Millions of Birds & Bats Each Year, Then The Locust Outbreak Happen!

by Rudy P. SysAdmin at howtofindthemoney
The wind industry claims a virtuous, moral superiority, but the millions of birds and bats that it slaughters each year, no doubt, think otherwise.

If wind power proponents weren’t so arrogant and sanctimonious, the fact that their beloveds slice and dice countless birds and bats and crush millions of tonnes of beneficial insects each year would probably pass as the natural and justifiable incident of an important power source.

But, starting from the position that these things are not only clean and green, but couldn’t harm a fly, leaves them wide open to a slam dunk charge of hypocrisy.

Then there’s the fact that heavily subsidised and chaotically intermittent wind power can’t be delivered on demand; never has, never will be. Electricity that can’t be provided in an instantaneous response to immediate demand has absolutely no commercial value.

Which means that an utterly pointless power generation system is killing millions of birds and bats and insects with impunity; an exercise in wanton, state sanctioned environmental destruction.



Among those critters clobbered or splattered by 50-60m blades (with their tips travelling at over 350 kmh) are species that feature on the threatened or endangered list. Like the critically endangered Tasmanian wedge-tailed eagle, and Europe’s Red Kite.

Off the coast of Britain, offshore wind turbines have slashed Herring Gull numbers by 82%, European Shag by 51% and Razorbills by 55%.

The picture is no brighter in the USA for America’s bats. At a recent conference in Indiana Ball State University biologist Tim Carter laid out the bloody facts before an audience gobsmacked by the scale of the carnage.

Professor: Many of Indiana’s bats are ‘dropping like flies’

Many of Indiana’s bats are disappearing at an alarming rate, but if you’re hoping that means a bat is less likely to sneak into your attic or church, you’re out of luck.

A recent bat talk by Ball State University biologist Tim Carter to local Audubon Society members was humorous and entertaining before turning bloody and fatal — a fact of life for bats.

There are more than 1,400 species of bats in the world, including 45 in the U.S. and 13 in Indiana, a handful of which are commonly encountered in central Indiana.

A longtime bat researcher who displays affection and admiration for the creatures, Carter has noticed that some species have become hard or impossible to find.

The primary cause is white-nose syndrome (WNS), an exotic infectious disease associated with a fungus introduced to the Albany, N.Y., area from Europe in 2006. It has spread west ever since, killing bats by the millions.

Indiana’s own tricolored bats, little brown bats, Indiana bats and northern long-eared bats “are all just dropping like flies,” Carter said.

The tricolored bat, which is the professor’s favorite, has never been super common in Indiana, but he used to be able to catch one per night — or if not one each night maybe two the next night.

“I haven’t seen one in five years,” he said.

And he used to catch long-eared bats all the time. “If we caught 300 bats in a summer, 150 would be long-ears,” Carter said. “With two to three times the effort, we might catch five, so the decline is very real … It’s not just on paper. In the wild, we just don’t see these. They really are getting wiped out. It’s pretty scary stuff.”

Researchers capture bats in volleyball-net-like equipment or harp-like devices containing vertical wires.

WNS is decimating cave bats that primarily hibernate in caves, mines or tunnels during the winter. The disease was possibly transmitted to North America on the clothing of a cave explorer from Europe.

The fungus attacks the bare skin of bats while they are hibernating. As it grows, the fungus causes changes in bats that make them more active than usual and burn up fat they need to survive winter, according to the WNS Response Team, a group of biologists, researchers, land managers and bat lovers.

During hibernation, bats turn off their internal furnace, dropping their body temperature from about 100 degrees to around 40 degrees, the same temperature as a cave, Carter explained. Their heart rate slows to below 20 beats per minute; they take only a handful of breaths per minute. They basically spend their winters in refrigeration or a state of suspended animation.

When they do wake up, they start shivering, and it can take them up to 30 minutes to come out of hibernation. They respond in slow motion if a predator comes along. Which is why they hide out in dark caves, up in a corner where nothing can find them.

“They do occasionally arouse (naturally) and use up some fat reserves, but if we come in and bother them … with flashlights … ‘Look, bats, they’re cool,’ they heard you, right, they just can’t do anything about it,” Carter said. “So they start that process of arousing, “Ooh, we should be quiet and leave them alone;’ and we leave, and the damage is already done … About 30 minutes later … they start flying around, ‘Where are all those people? Did you hear them? … then go back into hibernation, they just used 30 days worth of fat reserves.”

If they use up all the fat reserves they had stored up for winter and it’s only February, and “they eat insects for a living, they’re done,” Carter said.

WNS doesn’t affect migratory bats like the Eastern red bat that is found in Indiana.

Unfortunately, migratory bats are being killed by what Carter calls “wildlife in a blender,” or wind turbines. “People call this green energy,” he said recently to a crowd of bird lovers at Kennedy Library. “I call it red energy. I call them all kinds of terrible things.”

Not meaning to downplay the threat of wind farms to birds, but bird mortality at a wind farm is measured in dozens or hundreds, Carter said, while bat fatalities are measured in the thousands.

“A single wind farm can kill 4,000 bats in a single season,” he said.

The 150-foot-long blade of a wind turbine might not look like it’s moving fast, but on a windy day, it can complete one revolution in four seconds, which equates to the tip of the blade traveling more than 200 mph.

“Certainly bats are not expecting that,” said Carter, who sometimes thinks and talks like he’s a bat: “Hey, look at that really cool, tall thing out there. I’m going to go check it out. Hey look, it’s spinning. That’s really neat.’ They go check it out, and bam.”

Carter is researching ways to help conserve the bat population, he says, because they are an important part of the ecosystem, consuming vast amounts of insects, serving as pollinators in many areas, and distributing seeds in many areas, including rain forests.

In addition, they are biological indicators and make up nearly one-fourth of all mammals.

“Like it or not, we are part of the ecosystem,” Carter told The Star Press. “You can think of the ecosystem like a car. There are lots of parts and certainly some are more important than others. But we all know if you have enough parts on your car break, the car stops working and you are stranded.

“Species are the parts of the ecosystem. If we lose one or two we will likely be fine, but if we lose enough the ecosystem will struggle and eventually stop. That ecosystem is what makes the air we breathe, the water we drink and the food we eat. We need a healthy ecosystem for our existence.”

The bad news is, even if a cure for WNS were found today, it would take 100 years for every year that WNS has been in the U.S. to recoup the population of bats lost to the disease, Carter says. It arrived 13 years ago, so it would take about 1,300 years for the population to bounce back, because bats reproduce very slowly.

The good news, or bad news if you don’t like bats, is that Indiana’s big brown bat, which Carter describes as a super bat or “the cockroach of the bat world,” is not as vulnerable to WNS, experiencing only a 15% to 20% population decline, “which they can out-breed.”

“So we don’t have any problem with big browns; they’ll be here for a while,” Carter said.


About Rudy P. Magnate II   SysAdmin at howtofindthemoney

3,932 connections, 64 recommendations, 13,601 honor points.
Joined APSense since, April 9th, 2013, From Solo, Indonesia.

Created on Feb 9th 2020 00:15. Viewed 313 times.

Comments

No comment, be the first to comment.
Please sign in before you comment.