AN anti-windfarm campaigner has posted video of an osprey flying “dangerously” close to the site of proposed turbines.
Dan Luscombe, who lives near Loch Meiklie, Inverness, captured the magnificent bird diving for fish within two kilometres of the planned Cnoc an Eas wind farm.
Mr Luscombe says ospreys return to the loch every year and will be in “grave danger” if the scheme goes ahead.
Plans for the13-turbine Cnoc an Eas wind farm, near Drumnadrochit, were rejected by the Highland council last month on the grounds of visual intrusion and cumulative impact.
However, Force 9 Energy have until August 9 to submit an appeal which they say would allow their partners, EDF Energy, to generate enough renewable electricity to supply around 30,000 homes
Opponents of the scheme have warned that the turbines will pose a threat to bird life.
Mr Luscombe, secretary of a campaign to stop the wind farm development, said his video proved there was a serious threat to ospreys.
He said of the opsrey: “It returns here every year but this is the first time i’ve managed to film it.
“Should the Cnoc an Eas scheme go ahead, many birds, including this osprey will be in grave danger.
“The planning system does not seem to give enough weight to the well-being of wildlife.
“These wind turbines are gigantic and alien to the natural habitat that these creatures have inhabited for centuries.”
Highland anti-wind turbine campaigner Lyndsey Ward said fox runs had been spotted near existing structures, “indicating they expect an easy meal.”
She said: “Unless every turbine is monitored 24/7, 365 days a year, we have no idea the true bird death toll.
“If there are protected species near a proposed wind factory, developers should withdraw.”
There were 287 objections to the plans whilst Highland Council received just 12 letters backing the proposal.
Investigations are continuing over fears that a male osprey may have been killed last month by a turbine at Moy, south of Inverness.
The bird’s injuries were consistent with those expected from hitting wind turbine blades.