We must save wildlife, pleads an expat expert

SPAIN’S regional authorities are being pushed to do more to help the thousands of animals which die every year, after being caught in electric cables.

Birds of prey, including many protected species, have been killed on an industrial scale, which is something described by conservation groups as “truly a massacre”.

In fact, more than 33,000 birds of prey die each year because of electricity wires, according to a report by Spain’s Environment Ministry.

It comes after a lifelong British conservationist urged the company behind a mammoth electrification project in

Red Electrica’s network of 362 mega pylons across the Alpujarras could see protection measures cut to save money, according to expat conservation expert Nick Chambers.

It comes as a result of the Olive Press online launching its Fight the Power campaign, to highlight how more than 200 species could be threatened by the project, over 50% of which are birds.

“There is a whole list of regulations that need to be followed to safeguard these protective birds,” said Chambers.

“It is highly likely that they will do the absolute minimum to save themselves money on the whole thing,”

Chambers, who has helped protect some of the UK’s most vibrant wetlands, said: “Of course, environmental rules are the first to be cut as they are the hardest to monitor.”

He has joined other Spanish conservationist and environmental groups in calling on authorities to do more to discipline the energy companies.

But Red Electrica claims it works to minimise the towers’ impact on birds.

An REE spokesperson said: “To increase the visibility of these electric cables, we use bird-flight diverters, which alert the birds to the presence of the cables.”

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