Browsing by Subject "FARMS"

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  • Balotari-Chiebao, Fabio; Valkama, Jari; Byholm, Patrik (2021)
    Wind-energy expansion raises concerns over its potential impacts on bird populations. Birds may be affected directly via collision with turbines or indirectly via habitat loss or displacement due to disturbance. Species with long generation times, low reproductive output or high habitat specialisation are more likely to be impacted. Using national-scale breeding bird distributions, we applied a quantitative prioritisation method to assess the vulnerability of species to onshore wind-energy developments in Finland. We assessed 214 species that regularly breed in the country. Each species was assigned a priority score based on a combination of life-history traits, habitat specialisation, exposure to wind energy and conservation status. We found that the priority scores varied markedly between species, allowing a distinction between a minority of high-ranked species and a majority of low-ranked species. High-ranked species included terns (e.g., Sternula albifrons), raptors (e.g., Aquila chrysaetos), gulls (e.g., Larus fuscus), some forest-dwelling passerines (e.g., Poecile montanus) and ducks (e.g., Aythya ferina). Low-ranked species included woodpeckers (e.g., Picus canus) and many passerines. Our results indicate that the priority species are not limited to the more highly regarded large raptors, and that wind-energy impact assessments need to pay special attention to high-ranked species inhabiting coastal areas.
  • Khosravifard, Sam; Skidmore, Andrew K.; Naimi, Babak; Venus, Valentijn; Munoz, Antonio R.; Toxopeus, Albertus G. (2020)
    Renewable energy plays a key role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. However, the expansion of wind farms has raised concerns about risks for bird collisions. We tested different methods used to understand whether birds' flight occurs over wind turbines and found kernel density estimators outperform other methods. Previous studies using kernel utilization distribution (KUD) have considered only the 2 horizontal dimensions (2D). However, if altitude is ignored, an unrealistic depiction of the situation may result because birds move in 3 dimensions (3D). We quantified the 3D space use of the Griffon vulture (Gyps fulvus) in El Estrecho natural park in Tarifa (southern Spain, on the northern shore of the Strait of Gibraltar) during 2012-2013, and, for the first time, their risk of collision with wind turbines in an area in the south of Spain. The 2D KUD showed a substantial overlap of the birds' flight paths with the wind turbines in the study area, whereas the 3D kernel estimate did not show such overlap. Our aim was to develop a new approach using 3D kernel estimation to understand the space use of soaring birds; these are killed by collision with wind turbines more often than any other bird types in southern Spain. We determined the probability of bird collision with an obstacle within its range. Other potential application areas include airfields, plane flight paths, and tall buildings. (c) 2020 The Authors. Wildlife Society Bulletin published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of The Wildlife Society.
  • Santangeli, Andrea; Butchart, Stuart H. M.; Pogson, Mark; Hastings, Astley; Smith, Pete; Girardello, Marco; Moilanen, Atte (2018)
    The wind energy sector is steadily growing, and the number of wind turbines is expected to expand across large areas of the globe in the near future. While the development of wind energy can contribute to mitigating climate change, it also poses challenges to wildlife, particularly birds, due to increased collision risk with wind turbines. Here we quantify and map potential conflicts between the potential for wind energy development and the distribution of terrestrial soaring birds. We explore the relationship between species traits (including body mass, migration ecology and extinction risk) and exposure to potential wind energy development, and identified areas of potential conflict between wind power production and soaring bird conservation. We considered the full range of each species, as well as separately analyzing the breeding, non-breeding and passage ranges for migratory species. We show that exposure to potential wind energy development is similar for soaring and non-soaring bird species. Within different parts of the range of soaring bird species, passage distributions have significantly higher potential for wind energy development than the full, breeding or non-breeding ranges. Moreover, exposure to potential wind energy development was higher within the ranges of heavier soaring bird species and those that are migratory. We show that areas of conflict between soaring bird conservation and potential wind energy development could be very large, particularly when the passage ranges of soaring bird species are considered. Such areas of potential conflict are largely unprotected. This highlights a risk for soaring birds from potential wind energy development wherever it is not carefully sited in order to minimise environmental impacts.
  • Hautala, Katja; Näreaho, Anu; Kauppinen, Oili; Nielsen, Martin K.; Sukura, Antti; Rajala-Schultz, Paivi J. (2019)
    Gastrointestinal parasites, Parascaris sp. and strongyles, are common in young horses worldwide and control of these parasites is challenged by increasing anthelmintic resistance. Our aim was to identify risk factors for these infections as well as to assess the efficacy of fenbendazole (dose 7.5 mg/kg) and pyrantel embonate (dose 19 mg/kg) against Parascaris sp. We also evaluated association between owner observed symptoms and patent infections with these parasites. Fecal samples were collected from 367 young horses in Finland and a questionnaire study was conducted. Fecal egg counts were performed by Mini-FLOTAC (R) method. Univariable logistic regression models using patent infection status (Yes/No), separately for Parascaris sp. and strongyle infections as an outcome were run initially to screen potential risk factors collected by the questionnaire. After the initial screening, multiple logistic regression models were constructed and run to account for correlated data structure, risk factors and potential confounders simultaneously. Two significant risk factors for a patent Parascaris sp. infection were found: breeding farm size (p = 0.028) and frequency of horse movements (p = 0.010). Horses originating from large breeding farms were more likely (OR = 2.47, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.10-5.51) to shed Parascaris sp. eggs upon relocation to training stables compared to horses originating from small breeding farms. Horses living in farms with frequent horse movements to other premises had higher odds (OR = 3.56, 95% CI: 1.35-9.39) of a patent Parascaris sp. infection compared to farms with less frequent horse movements. Risk factors for patent strongyle infection included age (p <0.001) and season (p = 0.017). Horses were less likely (OR = 0.27, 95% CI: 0.10-0.66) to shed strongylid eggs during the spring compared to the winter. Horses excreting over 200 ascarid eggs per gram were included in the anthelmintic efficacy trial. A mean FECR less than 90% was interpreted as presence of anthelmintic resistance. The mean FECR was 98.5% (95% CI: 95.8-100) and 68.0% (95% CI: 52.7-83.3) in the fenbendazole (n = 31) and pyrantel (n = 26) treatment groups, respectively. In conclusion, we identified two new risk factors for patent Parascaris sp. infection; breeding farm size and frequency of horse movements. Reduced efficacy of pyrantel against Parascaris sp. was observed for the second time in Europe. A relatively high Parascaris sp. prevalence in yearlings (34%) and two-year-olds (20%) was observed, which has not been reported earlier. An association between symptoms and a patent Parascaris sp. infection was observed in foals.
  • Santoro, Azzurra; Tagel, Maarja; Must, Kart; Laine, Miia; Lassen, Brian; Jokelainen, Pikka (2017)
    Background: Toxoplasma gondii is a widespread occurring parasite infecting warm-blooded animals, including pigs and humans. The aims of this study were to estimate the prevalence of anti-T. gondii antibodies and to evaluate risk factors for T. gondii seropositivity in breeding pigs raised in Estonia. Sera from 382 pigs were tested with a commercial direct agglutination test, using a cut-off titer of 40 for seropositivity, for the presence of anti-T. gondii immunoglobulin G antibodies. Results: Twenty-two (5.8%) of the 382 pigs tested seropositive for T. gondii, and 6 of the 14 herds had at least one seropositive pig. The proportion of seropositive pigs within the herds ranged between 0 and 43%. Gender appeared as a significant factor, with sows having 5.6 times higher odds to be seropositive to T. gondii than boars. Seroprevalence did not increase with age. Conclusions: Anti-T. gondii antibodies were present in a substantial proportion of breeding pig herds in Estonia. On the other hand, the presence of herds without seropositive pigs illustrates that porcine T. gondii infections can be avoided even in a country where the parasite is endemic and common in several other host species.