This report synthesizes the results of three months study performed in 2012 within the scope of the comparative analysis of the results from previous studies in 2009 and 2010. The comparative analysis of the surveys of breeding seasons 2009 and 2010 enabled a full Before-After-Control-Impact (BACI) analysis and the results did not indicate any adverse effect of the operational wind farm on the distribution or abundance of breeding birds (see report at http://www.aesgeoenergy.com/site/Studies.html). Therefore a detailed breeding bird survey comparable to those conducted in 2009 and 2010 was considered unnecessary in 2011. The 2011 breeding season observations conducted as part of the RIoEW Varna requirements have been submitted to the regional office of Bulgarian Ministry of Environment and Waters (RIoEW Varna) in accordance with the requirements of the Ministry. After the end of the mandatory one year period (March 2011) an annual summary report was also submitted to RIoEW Varna.
The comparative studies previously reported in pre- and post-operation periods revealed strong fluctuations in the number of species and their abundance in highly anthropogenised agricultural habitats, depending on the cultivated crops. Findings did not suggest that the SNWF territory is of particular conservation importance for breeding birds in the region.
In this study we aimed to identify the bird species breeding in the wind park territory (Saint Nikola Wind Farm: SNWF) and quantify their densities in order to re-visit the possibility that special measures may be needed concerning breeding birds within the wind farm, after two years of operation. The present study was focused on the identification of any high conservation value species or areas with special concentrations of breeding birds, together with an evaluation of the potential threats for birds breeding within the wind farm.
SNWF is located in NE Bulgaria, close to the Black Sea coast near the cape of Kaliakra and lies between the road from the village of Bulgarevo to St. Nikola (municipality of Kavarna), and the 1st class road E 87 Kavarna to Shabla (Fig. 1). SNWF consists mainly of arable land with different crops (e.g. wheat, sunflower, flax), intersected with roads and shelter belts. SNWF includes areas outside the Natura 2000 site Kaliakra.