Wind turbine promoters are fond of saying that modern turbines don't pose the same danger to birds as faster spinning versions of the 1980s. Try telling that to bird watchers gazing at a white-throated needletail in the UK recently. The bird had been seen only eight times there since 1846. A group of 40 enthusiasts in the Hebrides off the west coast of Scotland had gathered to take in the brown, black and blue bird, when it flew too close to a utility-scale wind turbine and ended up going kersplat on one of its blades.
An item in the Daily Mail reports that a spokesperson who runs bird tracking online for the British Trust for Ornithology, in typical British understatement, said "It is not the happiest ending for a bird that has flown half way around the world."