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The stork threatens train operations next to the badger

File photo of a stork nest in the Netherlands. Photo: Apdency via Wikimedia Commons

Railroad operator ProRail is busy trying to remove badgers from under tracks at some 40 locations in the Netherlands. nesting stork It is becoming a threat to train services from above.

Around Drenthe’s Meppel alone, 29 pairs of storks nest on overhead wire poles, which can easily fall onto tracks, trains or points, says ProRail ecologist Volkert Wolveda. said.

“Stork” nests can easily weigh hundreds of kilograms and damage overhead lines or even fall onto passing trains.

It is also a dangerous place for storks. There is an electrocution hazard, and train drivers frequently report colliding with birds near their nests.

Storks are like high poles, said Wim van Nee, who runs the stork conservation group STORK. “They’re really perfect, well-visible, and safe from predators and people. They often stay for years and continually add to their nests,” he told RTL Nieuws.

The stork, like the badger, is a protected species after it disappeared from the Netherlands in the 1970s. Nest removal requires special accommodations and ProRail must provide alternative accommodation for the birds.

ProRail is currently attempting to lure the storks to designated nesting sites, but the lack of terrain sufficiently far from the track has hampered attempts to re-contain the storks.

“If you put the poles too close to the railroad tracks, the storks will just return to their nests and you can’t expect your neighbors to welcome ‘our’ storks,” Volveda says.

ProRail predicts that more storks will pass on the tracks in the near future. “It’s great to see them doing well, but we’d rather have them nest somewhere safe.

https://www.dutchnews.nl/news/2023/04/after-badgers-its-storks-that-threaten-train-services/ The stork threatens train operations next to the badger

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