The need for a Breeding Bird Survey was identified in the Saint Nikola Wind Farm Environmental Management and Monitoring Plan (EMMP) and is being undertaken to characterize the breeding bird assemblage within the Saint Nikola Wind Farm (SNWF) and to assess any future changes which may be attributable to the operation of the wind turbines. This report synthesizes the results of 3 months study performed in 2010 within the scope of the comparative analysis of the results from 2009. The same transects running roughly north to south through the wind farm territory have been chosen and surveyed. Two control transects as in 2009 have been chosen outside of the wind farm territory to account for ‘natural changes’ in breeding bird populations within the project area, which would not be attributable to an effect of the operational turbines. Details of the vegetation along each transect were recorded to account for any habitat-related effects on changes in the breeding bird assemblage in present analyses. The results of the 2009 and 2010 surveys are assessed against the European Ornithological Atlas Committee’s (EOAC) criteria for breeding bird status. A total of 94 species was recorded, including many with national or international classifications of vulnerable or threatened status. The number of species and their numbers in the wind farm territory fluctuate in relation to the natural patterns in their dynamics in highly anthropogenised agricultural habitats depending on the crops planted in the field. Findings do not suggest that the SNWF is of particular conservation importance for its breeding birds. Based on the results of Breeding Bird Surveys in 2009 and 2010 there is no adverse effect of the wind park operation on the bird assemblage in the wind park territory and surroundings including investigated steppe habitats.
Saint Nikola Wind Farm: 2010 Breeding Bird Survey
Zehtindjiev, P. (2010). Saint Nikola Wind Farm: 2010 Breeding Bird Survey. Report by AES Geo Energy. pp 18.