October 4, 2012
AltaLink and the Alberta Birds of Prey Foundation release rehabilitated Great Horned Owl
Lethbridge, Alberta - A Great Horned Owl and several raptors spread their wings and returned to the southern Alberta sky today. AltaLink released the birds that were recently rehabilitated at the Alberta Birds of Prey Centre.
Employees from AltaLink's environment team were on hand to help with the release as one of the birds had a special connection to the electric transmission company.
"In May, our field crew found a young Great Horned Owl in an AltaLink substation. We were concerned that the young owl may be injured when attempting to fly out of the substation, so we arranged to have it transferred to the Alberta Birds of Prey Centre," said Nikki Heck, Environmental Advisor with AltaLink. "After a few months of care, we're happy that we can return this owl back to the wild."
AltaLink's facilities connect 85 per cent of Albertans with safe and reliable power, but can also have an impact on birds and other wildlife. "I'm proud to say that AltaLink is the first electric utility in Canada to implement an Avian Protection Plan (APP) to try and mitigate the risk to Alberta's birds," said Heck, who has a Masters Degree in Environmental Science specializing in bird and power line interactions.
There are many aspects to AltaLink's APP, including a set of programs designed to protect birds from injury on AltaLink facilities. "For example, we install GreenJacket cover?ups in our substations to prevent birds from coming into contact with energized components," said Heck.
"We are happy to partner with the Alberta Birds of Prey Foundation to help rehabilitate and protect Alberta's birds of prey," added Heck.
AltaLink's transmission system efficiently delivers electricity to 85% of Albertans. Dedicated to meeting the growing need for electricity, AltaLink connects Albertans to renewable, reliable and low-cost power. With a commitment to community and environment, AltaLink is ensuring the transmission system will support Albertans' quality of life for years to come. Learn more at www.altalink.ca.
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