SOR surveyed over 200 km of powerlines in Southeastern Romania

Mar 21, 2023
In October and November 2022 SOR’s team verified all medium voltage power lines found in a 10 km radius of known occupied Saker Falcon nests in Southeastern Romania. 

In total 3764 pylons were surveyed, of which 504 (13.4%) had at least one electrocuted birds underneath, leading to a total of 723 casualties. Most of the faulty pylons (76.2%) had only one carcass, while the most extreme case was a stretching pole with the remains of 15 birds underneath. 

The birds belonged to 28 different species, 72.9% of them being corvids, with Magpies (Pica pica) and Rooks (Corvus frugilegus) being the most abundant, counting 236 and 200 respectively. While there were 42 White Storks (Ciconia ciconia). We found also 23 Common Buzzards, 11 Kestrels (Falco tinnunculus), a Long-legged Buzzard (Buteo rufinus) and 6 Short-toed Eagles (Circaetus gallicus).

While almost every seventh pylon we surveyed caused the death of at least one bird by electrocution, the most dangerous ones being those with vertical insulators, fortunately none of the carcasses found belonged to a Saker Falcon.

The next phase of the LIFE for Falcons project aims to reduce the risk of electrocution by insulating the most dangerous lines, the central part of Dobrudja being of a high priority for the conservation of the Saker Falcon.

The full technical report is available here.

Photos: SOR