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Imagine how it would feel to fly through the sky on wings so wide, when you catch some rising warm air you soar for miles! This is how vultures fly as they look for their next meal.

Unfortunately, places that are best for vultures can also be good locations for wind farms because there’s lots of wind to turn their turbines and make electricity. When vultures fly close to these turbines, the moving blades can hit them, killing or severely wounding them.

We collected data on existing and proposed wind farms in south-eastern Europe, and compared them with data on the areas that cinereous vultures (Aegypius monachus) live in. We found that if the new wind farms go where planned, this population of vultures could be at serious risk of extinction.

We suggest an approach that would allow Greece to exceed its wind power targets while protecting these vultures.

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About this article

Summary of research
Wind turbines sometimes injure vultures flying by. Researchers are looking for ways to solve this problem.
Reading level
Scientific field
Key words
NGSS standards
AP Environmental science topics
IB Biology topics
Scientific methods
Type of figure
Location of research
Scientist Affiliation
Publication date
May 2017

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