Monitoring fauna at proposed offshore wind farm sites is important to understand how they are using the environment during different seasons and weather conditions to inform project impact assessments. The surveys will take place monthly to record seabird, cetacean and other wildlife that utilise the area.
‘Seadragon’ is one of the first proposed offshore wind projects in Australia led by international developer Flotation Energy. With a proposed capacity of 1.5GW, it has the potential to generate electricity for up to 1 million homes in the state of Victoria. We are pleased to be part of this project and to accompany Australia on its way to establish offshore wind as a renewable energy source.
The Seadragon marine baseline survey program is being led by RPS in collaboration with a number of other scientific and academic partners including HiDef. HiDef surveys are being flown with aircraft charter company 360° Aviation, based in Melbourne.
Since 2008, HiDef Aerial Surveying and BioConsult SH have been monitoring seabirds and marine mammals using our bespoke ultra-high-resolution digital video camera system developed by HiDef Aerial Surveying, which joined the BioConsult SH family in 2016. Flying at an altitude of >500m, this method is setting a new standard for ecological surveying by minimising disturbance to wildlife and reducing safety risks. Compared to visual aerial surveys for bird monitoring at sea it provides significantly improved data with increased objectivity for environmental impact assessments and nature conservation projects.