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Title: Wind Energy and Wildlife Pre- and Post-Construction Project at Pantex Plant

Abstract

From 2009-2017, we conducted pre- and post-construction monitoring of wildlife at the Pantex Plant before and after construction of five wind turbines on the plant in 2014-2015. Pre-construction acoustic monitoring for bats was conducted at five sites on Pantex. Acoustic (here after Anabat) files were downloaded 30 times with Anabat files recorded from 6/21/2010 through 1/17/2014. The resulting data include over 3,000,000 files and we hope to analyze them in the future. We were never successful recording acoustic data after 2014 (post-construction). This is despite numerous attempts to trouble shoot our acoustic monitors. Wind damage to cables going from the body of the monitor to their microphones could not be repaired or replaced while towers were standing. Sampling of breeding birds was accomplished through point counts conducted at sites selected for turbine construction and others selected as control sites. Precipitation varied greatly over the course of the study, from a low of 17.81 cm (7.01 inches) during 2011 to a high of 87.96 cm (34.63 inches) during 2015. The pre-construction portion of the project was characterized by fairly extreme drought starting in 2011. Total precipitation for 2011 and 2012 was just 49.12 cm (19.34 inches), less than 50% of themore » average for a two-year period. The impact of this drought on nesting grassland birds manifest as low nesting species richness and abundance. In 2011 and 2012, 20 and 17 species were documented during point counts, respectively. Post-construction sampling followed the wet year of 2015 (87.96 cm, 34.63 inches). Species richness of nesting birds in 2016 and 2017 was considerably higher than during the drought, 40 and 37 species, respectively. We suspect changes in resource availability associated with relief from drought starting after 2015 was responsible for the recovery/increase in species detected during the breeding season; less importantly any changes from installation of turbines or changes in surface management (e.g., row-crop type).« less

Authors:
 [1]
  1. Texas A & M Univ., College Station, TX (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Pantex Plant (PTX), Amarillo, TX (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1416956
Report Number(s):
IROS957
DOE Contract Number:
NA0001942
Resource Type:
Thesis/Dissertation
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; habitat; swainson's hawk; raptor; eagle; bat; acoustic monitoring; survey; construction; wildlife; turbine

Citation Formats

Matlack, Raymond S. Wind Energy and Wildlife Pre- and Post-Construction Project at Pantex Plant. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.2172/1416956.
Matlack, Raymond S. Wind Energy and Wildlife Pre- and Post-Construction Project at Pantex Plant. United States. doi:10.2172/1416956.
Matlack, Raymond S. Wed . "Wind Energy and Wildlife Pre- and Post-Construction Project at Pantex Plant". United States. doi:10.2172/1416956. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1416956.
@article{osti_1416956,
title = {Wind Energy and Wildlife Pre- and Post-Construction Project at Pantex Plant},
author = {Matlack, Raymond S.},
abstractNote = {From 2009-2017, we conducted pre- and post-construction monitoring of wildlife at the Pantex Plant before and after construction of five wind turbines on the plant in 2014-2015. Pre-construction acoustic monitoring for bats was conducted at five sites on Pantex. Acoustic (here after Anabat) files were downloaded 30 times with Anabat files recorded from 6/21/2010 through 1/17/2014. The resulting data include over 3,000,000 files and we hope to analyze them in the future. We were never successful recording acoustic data after 2014 (post-construction). This is despite numerous attempts to trouble shoot our acoustic monitors. Wind damage to cables going from the body of the monitor to their microphones could not be repaired or replaced while towers were standing. Sampling of breeding birds was accomplished through point counts conducted at sites selected for turbine construction and others selected as control sites. Precipitation varied greatly over the course of the study, from a low of 17.81 cm (7.01 inches) during 2011 to a high of 87.96 cm (34.63 inches) during 2015. The pre-construction portion of the project was characterized by fairly extreme drought starting in 2011. Total precipitation for 2011 and 2012 was just 49.12 cm (19.34 inches), less than 50% of the average for a two-year period. The impact of this drought on nesting grassland birds manifest as low nesting species richness and abundance. In 2011 and 2012, 20 and 17 species were documented during point counts, respectively. Post-construction sampling followed the wet year of 2015 (87.96 cm, 34.63 inches). Species richness of nesting birds in 2016 and 2017 was considerably higher than during the drought, 40 and 37 species, respectively. We suspect changes in resource availability associated with relief from drought starting after 2015 was responsible for the recovery/increase in species detected during the breeding season; less importantly any changes from installation of turbines or changes in surface management (e.g., row-crop type).},
doi = {10.2172/1416956},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Wed Jan 03 00:00:00 EST 2018},
month = {Wed Jan 03 00:00:00 EST 2018}
}

Thesis/Dissertation:
Other availability
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