Power Line Marking
Each year, Trumpeter Swans are killed due to collisions with electrical power lines that block access to and from critical waterways in Jackson Hole. These losses have seriously impacted efforts to restore the threatened Trumpeter Swan population in our region. Wyoming Game & Fish has attributed at least 40% of known swan mortalities to collisions. In addition to swans, raptors also die from collisions with electrical power lines.
To mitigate this problem, the Jackson Hole Wildlife Foundation is working with Wyoming Game and Fish and Lower Valley Energy to make our skies safer for swans, raptors and other large birds by marking power lines with a device called a firefly flapper/diverter. The diverter glows, reflects and flaps in the wind alerting the swans to the power line. Studies have shown it to be quite effective. With increased power line visibility these avian species are better able to avoid collisions. Lower Valley Energy has placed over 225 firefly markers over the last several years.
The public can help protect swans and other birds by carefully evaluating placement of power lines, bridges and fences on their properties. If these occur along or adjacent to known flyways, make these improvements/structures as visible as possible. Also, try to avoid flushing swans from ponds and wetlands as escape flights can result in collisions even if swans are familiar with the area.
Additionally, the public can help protect swans and other birds by calling in the locations of any observed collisions or near-hits with power lines to the Wyoming Game and Fish Department as soon as possible. Please call Bill Long at the Game and Fish office at (307) 733-2321. To find out more, visit the trumpeter swan fund website
For more information on the Firefly II Bird Flapper go to www.pr-tech.com