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Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Windmill casualty

Whilst out walking my local moor  last month,I came across this injured juv Peregrine Falcon!It was sat directly under one of the 12 windmills that were erected,no doubt hit by one of the rotating blades.
Now I`m all for renewable energy but at what cost to wildlife does it come!!

Quickly capturing the bird which obviously had serious wing damage,I noticed that it had 2 rings attached to its legs.Aquick phonecall to a local raptor worker and he informed me that it was a last years male that he`d rung from a nest of 3 in the pennines.He couldn`t believe that the young bird had survived,as it was the fourth Peregrine he`d had back,the other three birds were all adult and were found dead below the windmills,2 from Scotland and one from scout moor.

I arranged to meet my friend back at my home with the injured Peregrine.An hour later we were on our way to a falconer who would check the bird over and administer anti biotics to the bird.We felt confident that he would survive and be able to release him back into the wild!

It was obvious that the bird had a broken wing but seemed healthy enough.A few days went by when Ian the falconer at Wild wings nr Walkden rung me up to tell me that the bird was being collected by an avian vet who specialises in these injuries and could give the bird a proper x ray to determine the damage,the bird was then taken to the vets nr Crewe.8 days went by before the telephone rung again and the news wasn`t good.The bird had been given antibiotics and the wound wasn`t showing any signs of healing up.The vet decided the best course of action was to put the young falcon down.Disaster!I don`t think there was anything else we could have done to try and get the bird fit but we tried our best for it!
Last week I walked back up the moor for a recce,checking the turbines for anymore casualties,luckily there were none to be found.I scanned round with the binoculars before I set off for home and there in the distance on one of the many frnce posts was perched an adult Peregrine.Lets hope he doesn`t suffer the same fate as the young male,and goes on to breed for many a year to come!!!


  1. An excellent and well illustrated account of the Peregrine Falcon's eventual demise along with three others suffering the same fate of flying into a wind turbine. Obviously a case against the turbines safety record regarding bird strikes.

    On behalf of the Peregrine Falcon and your attempts to save it....Many Thanks Paul.

  2. Paul. A valiant effort by yourself and all concerned to save this beautiful young peregrine falcon.Sadly not meant to be. Let's hope there are no more of these tragic accidents. Catch up with you soon.

  3. What a shame a beautiful bird. There seems to be more and more of these wind farms going up and I'm not even sure whether they cost out.