Marking of power lines and appropriate design of electricity pylons

Collision with power lines and electrocution kill hundreds of birds every year. Furthermore, major above-ground power lines fragment open landscapes and thus reduce the number of large open spaces used by birds during migration.
© Cornerstone /
© Cornerstone /

Accidents of this type can be avoided or at least reduced through good cooperation between bird protection and nature conservation organisations and power line operators.
To determine the regional situation, any dead birds found must be documented, collected and analysed as a basis for the adoption of appropriate measures. These include:

  • encouraging underground location of cables in high-risk areas;
  • removing particularly dangerous masts (e.g. models which are open at the top, which can become a death-trap for hollow-breeders);
  • encouraging underground location of new 20,000 volt cables; alternatively, if this is not possible, incorporating appropriate safety features to protect birds;
  • taking account of biotopes in the planning and implementation of work to clear routes for power lines (nesting periods etc.)
  • making routes as environmentally compatible and sensitive as possible.
  • visual marking of particularly dangerous power lines (e.g. using red warning balls)

Further information


Safety measures on electricity masts and cables


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