This report details the results of a Phase I Avian Risk Assessment for the proposed Herkimer Wind Farm (hereafter the "Project") in the towns of Fairfield and Norway in Herkimer County, New York. This assessment includes: 1) a site visit conducted on November 10, 2004, 2) a review of the literature and available databases, and 3) written consultations with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC). The site visit evaluated habitat in order to estimate the type and number of birds likely to nest, forage, rest or otherwise use the site. The literature and database review examined the avifauna most likely to be present at or surrounding the site and information releveant to potential impacts to birds at comparable wind power facilities. The written consultations with wildlife agencies sought to clarify bird species of concern in the Project vicinity. Together, this information indicates the type and approximate numbers of birds that are known or suspected to use the Project site. When incorporate into the risk assessment, this information helps determine the degree of risk to birds from the proposed wind power development.
The Herkimer Wind Farm is proposed by the Atlantic Renewable Energy Corporation, a division of PPM. A conceptual layout for the Project shows 61 wind turbines distributed over an area 9 miles (14.4 km) long and 2 miles (3.2 km) wide. Each of the wind turbines would have a nameplate generating capacity of 1.5 to 1.8 MW (megawatts), yielding a total nameplate generating capacity of between about 91.5 and 110 MW. The towers of the wind turbines would be about 80 meters (262 feet) tall and have rotors of approximately 38.5 m (126 feet) long. With the rotor tip in the 12 o'clock position, the wind turbines would reach a maximum height of about 120 m (394 feet) above ground level (AGL) and the rotor tip in the 6 o'clock position, would be about 41.5 meters (136 feet) AGL.