Action: Retain a buffer between turbines and habitat features used by bats
Key messagesRead our guidance on Key messages before continuing
- We found no studies that evaluated the effects of retaining a buffer between turbines and habitat features used by bats on bat populations.
‘We found no studies’ means that we have not yet found any studies that have directly evaluated this action during our systematic journal and report searches. Therefore we have been unable to assess whether or not the action is effective or has any harmful impacts. Please get in touch if you know of such a study for this action.
This intervention involves leaving a minimum distance between wind turbines and bat roosts or habitat features to create a buffer zone. The EUROBAT guidance on bats and wind turbines recommends a minimum distance of 200 m between wind turbines and important bat habitats (Rodrigues et al. 2014). Natural England, UK recommends a minimum distance of 50 m from the turbine blade tip to the nearest bat habitat feature (Mitchell-Jones & Carlin 2012), and for micro turbines a minimum distance of 20 m has been recommended (Minderman et al. 2012). However, reduced bat activity has been recorded up to 1,000 m from wind turbines (Barré et al. 2018).
Barré, K., Le Viol, I., Bas, Y., Julliard, R. & Kerbiriou, C. (2018) Estimating habitat loss due to wind turbine avoidance by bats: Implications for European siting guidance. Biological Conservation, 226, 205–214.
Minderman J., Pendlebury C.J., Pearce-Higgins J.W. & Park K.J. (2012) Experimental evidence for the effect of small wind turbine proximity and operation on bird and bat activity. PLoS ONE, 7, e41177.
Mitchell-Jones, T & Carlin C. (2012) Bats and onshore wind turbines interim guidance. Natural England Technical Information Note TIN051.
Rodrigues, L., Bach, L., Dubourg-Savage, M., Karapandža, B., Kovač, D., Kervyn, T., Dekker, J., Kepel, A., Bach, P., Collins, J., Harbusch, C., Park, K., Micevski, B., Minderman, J. (2015) Guidelines for Consideration of Bats in Wind Farm Projects - Revision 2014. EUROBATS Publication Series No. 6 (English version). UNEP/EUROBATS Secretariat, Bonn, Germany.