HiDef Aerial Surveying Limited and BioConsult SH have conducted their first digital survey flight for marine species off the south-east coast of Australia. The flight took place for the construction of the planned wind farm “Seadragon”.
In order to assess the impact of the construction and operation of an offshore wind farm, it is important to monitor the fauna at the affected sites. In this way, it is possible to understand how the animals use the area at different times of the year and under different weather conditions. The surveys will take place monthly to record seabirds, whales and other species found in the area.
Seadragon Offshore Wind is one of the first offshore wind projects planned in Australia and is being implemented by international developer Flotation Energy. With a planned capacity of 1.5 GW, electricity could be generated for up to 1 million homes in the state of Victoria. We are delighted to be part of this project and to accompany Australia on its journey to harness offshore wind energy as a renewable energy source.
Seadragon’s marine baseline investigations are being led by RPS in collaboration with a number of other scientific and academic partners, including HiDef. The HiDef flight surveys are carried out by 360° Aviation, an aircraft charter company based in Melbourne.
The tailor-made, high-resolution video camera system was developed by our British partner company HiDef Aerial Surveying, which has been part of the German BioConsult SH family since 2016. Since 2008, HiDef and BioConsult SH have been using this system to record seabirds and marine mammals at an altitude of over 500 meters. The method sets new standards for ecological surveys, as it minimizes disturbance to wildlife and reduces safety risks. Compared to observer flights to record birds and marine mammals at sea, the system provides significantly better and verifiable data for environmental impact assessments and nature conservation projects.