Slide 1

OUR COMPANY

NEWS
HiDef attend European Cetacean Society Conference

HiDef attend European Cetacean Society Conference

HiDef have been busy at the European Cetacean Society conference this week 10th-12th April.

Jaz Harker talked about the winter distributions of common dolphin in the Irish and Celtic Seas and implications for assessment of anthropogenic impacts.

A poster by Ruth Peters-Grundy assesses diving information for cetaceans with a view to correcting abundance estimates for availability bias.

For those attending the event, there’s still time to come say hello!

 

Pentland Floating Offshore Wind Farm

Pentland Floating Offshore Wind Farm

HiDef are proud to have recently undertaken the marine ornithological impact assessment for both the original consent for the Pentland Floating Offshore Wind Farm, and this subsequent variation.

For this variation, HiDef undertook technical modelling and preparation of ornithology technical sections for the overall variation submission report.

We are delighted to have played a significant role in the projects success!

Happy International Women’s Day 2024!

Happy International Women’s Day 2024!

Today HiDef celebrates all the women who achieve and contribute massively to this great company.

It is a day when women are recognised for their achievements, so here’s to another great year crushing it!

 

US client excited by whale footage

US client excited by whale footage

For the past year HiDef have been working with US consultancy BRI and the US governments Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM). The project has been focussed on the gulf of Maine and its exciting marine megafauna.

This has seen thousands of images collated, reviewed, and analysed.

These cover all taxa, and additionally man-made activities, such as the extensive lobster fishery in the area. A recent highlight however was locating two Fin whales in the area who performed well for the cameras.

Manatee release – a heartwarming winter story

Manatee release – a heartwarming winter story

HiDef’s Zack Johnson has a real affinity for the Florida wetlands, both at work and play, and attended an exciting Manatee release last week.

“I first met Reckless at the St. Lucie Lock and Dam during the Army Corps of Engineers’ lock restoration project in December of 2021, for which I was the lead protected species observer.  Reckless was trapped on the Lake Okeechobee side of the dam with up to 50 other manatees at one point, unable to get past the lock to their winter warm water sites.  We (Sea World / Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission) captured her in January and moved her to the other side of the lock.  She was heavily pregnant at the time and was estimated to weigh around 2500 lbs, and over 12 feet in length.

Approximately two weeks later Reckless was found near death with her left pectoral flipper almost completely amputated at the shoulder from a large boat strike.  She was also found to be with a newborn calf, Churro, who still had the umbilical cord attached when found.  Had she not had a newborn calf with her she likely would have been euthanized, but the effort to save her was made in order to give her calf the best chance of survival.  After nearly 2 years in rehab and over 12 surgeries and procedures later, she (and Churro) was returned to the wild near the Port Everglades power plant.  Both animals wear radio tracking tags and will be checked bi-weekly by biologists to make sure they are still doing well. ”

HiDef visits University of Liverpool conference

HiDef visits University of Liverpool conference

Yesterday HiDef’s Senior Data Scientist Jack Forster attended the University of Liverpool conference for the 18th Annual Conference of the UK and Ireland Regional Student Chapter of the Society of Mammalogy.

 

 

It’s 2024 and HiDef has a busy year ahead in North America

It’s 2024 and HiDef has a busy year ahead in North America

It’s 2024 and HiDef has a busy year ahead in North America.

Last year we partnered with Williams Aerial and Mapping, a full-service photogrammetric mapping and geospatial, data firm, with over 100 years of combined experience in the aerial survey marketplace.

We are excited to be working closely with Williams and look forward to the year ahead.

Contact Zack Johnson if we can help you out in the US or Canada.

 

HiDef appointed as Aerial Survey Contractors for Nova East Wind in Canada

HiDef appointed as Aerial Survey Contractors for Nova East Wind in Canada

Masters project available with HiDef

Masters project available with HiDef

Masters project available with HiDef Aerial Surveying Limited (Jaz Harker and Will Peden) on the impact of avian flu on gannet populations in the British Isles!

Available through MASTS Scotland, link to project information is here: https://lnkd.in/eHBye5ps

Please get in touch if you want to hear more about the project through LinkedIn or the contact details provided in the project proposal form.

This is the link to the official project page: https://masts.ac.uk/graduate-school/making-the-most-of-masters/further-background/.

Contacts:

Jaz Harker (Senior Ecological Consultant) –  jaz.harker@hidefsurveying.co.uk

William Penden (Senior Data Scientist) – william.peden@hidefsurveying.co.uk

 

 

 

First Commercial HiDef Flight in Australia

First Commercial HiDef Flight in Australia

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.

 

 

 

 

 

HiDef attend Global Offshore Wind Awards 2023

HiDef attend Global Offshore Wind Awards 2023

HiDef attended Renewable UK Awards in London last week and it proved to be very successful.

Great to meet existing clients and make new contacts while networking to a backdrop of the voice of Alan Dedicoat from Strictly and the National Lottery!

Big praise received for work on Projects including Galloper and Seagreen for the HiDef team and an overall positive vibe from industry about the future in the UK and global markets. 

 

 

HiDef attend Lloyds Business Awards finalist drinks reception

HiDef attend Lloyds Business Awards finalist drinks reception

Last week HiDef’s Ben Cockshull and Anna Macklin attended the Lloyds Business Awards Finalist Drinks Reception at St.Pauls Cathedral in London for an evening of networking.

It’s an exciting time for HiDef as a finalist and we look forward to attending the awards night on the 14th November.

 

West of Orkney windfarm plans submitted

West of Orkney windfarm plans submitted

HiDef are pleased to see that the application for consent for the West of Orkney wind farm has now been submitted. The proposed development is located approximately 25km from the north coast of Scotland and will generate around 2GW of clean electricity.

HiDef have played an important role in this application, from discussions in 2018 through to beginning data collection back in July 2020 when we successfully completed the first high-resolution digital aerial survey of the development area and 4km buffer. Surveys continued at approximately monthly intervals until September 2022, and over the survey program duration 32 species of birds and 12 species of non-avian animals, including marine mammals, fish and jellyfish were detected. These data were used to support the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for ornithology and marine mammals.

HiDef led on the marine mammal work delivery for the EIA. Our specialists delivered the marine mammal scoping chapter and baseline supporting study. The latter included modelling of the DAS data to provide spatial predictions of harbour porpoise and white-beaked dolphin density. Using outputs from the underwater noise assessment prepared by SMRU Consulting, HiDef prepared the marine mammal chapter for the Environmental Impact Assessment Report.

Finally, we prepared the Outline Marine Mammal Mitigation Protocol, which is required to minimize the risk of injury to marine mammals from preconstruction and construction underwater noise related impacts.

We look forward to working with Offshore Wind Power Limited to support their development post consent.

Client website: www.westoforkney.com

 

 

HiDef join The Crown Estate to deliver key project.

HiDef join The Crown Estate to deliver key project.

HiDef are proud to be working with The Crown Estate to deliver this key project.

The Crown Estate are embarking the next phase of a major programme of marine surveys in the Celtic Sea, which will give developers valuable data on the potential locations for new windfarms.

HiDef as leading aerial surveyors have assigned flights to take to the skies over the Celtic Sea capturing information on birds and marine mammals.

More information on this exciting project can be found here: 2023 – The Crown Estate refines plans for Celtic Sea floating wind | 2023 – The Crown Estate refines plans for Celtic Sea floating wind

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HiDef attend conference on wind energy and wildlife impacts

HiDef attend conference on wind energy and wildlife impacts

This week HiDef attended the 7th Conference on Wind Energy and Wildlife Impacts – CWW2023

It’s been a very eventful week so far meeting and chatting with so many of you.

We even had a winner for our Arbikie Europe climate neutral gin draw.

Congratulations Jonathan Whiting, Environmental Engineer at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.

HiDef become Lloyds British Business Awards finalists!

HiDef become Lloyds British Business Awards finalists!

HiDef are excited to announce we have been shortlisted at the Lloyds Bank British Business Excellence Awards 2023.

Keep your fingers crossed for us on awards night this November.

#Awards #Lloyds #Finalist #BBEA23

 

HiDef welcome Jack Forster

HiDef welcome Jack Forster

HiDef recently welcomed Dr Jack Forster to the team. To have Jack on board with his 10 years working as a statistician in government boosts our capabilities once again. Jack is also a Chartered Statistician emphasising his skills.

He specialises in the use of the R programming and has a keen interest in the production of interactive content to aid efficiency, engagement and understanding for both stakeholders and the public.

Welcome to the team Jack!

 

 

 

Hope for seabirds?

Hope for seabirds?

In recent years we have all learned much about viruses, the way they spread and the impacts they can have. It is no longer the realm of just specialist scientists, everyone has access to more information to form an opinion.

Summer 2021 saw many North Sea seabirds perish. Autumn saw large numbers of auks loitering close inshore on the Scottish coast at a time when they would be expected to way out to sea. Many succumbed, raising awareness within the general public that there was some form of die-off event. While the cause remained unclear, the results were stark, and a large number of birds were found as tideline corpses. The question was where these deaths at a sufficient level to show up as a population impact?

Moving forward twelve months and news started to filter of various seabird species again succumbing. It has quickly established that avian influenza, or bird flu (H5N1), was behind this event and certain species were being especially impacted. Harrowing scenes emerged from Shetland of dead Great skuas in 2022 and soon after Gannets were struck at what appears to be all the northern and east coast colonies with Bempton in Yorkshire being impacted in 2023. Meanwhile tern colonies around the southern North Sea were devastated including the important roseate tern colony at Coquet Island. The majority of seabird colonies have been affected raising concerns about population impacts. Impacts are hugely negative for sure, but can a species rebound? Once it is on a negative trajectory how is it possible for a species to recover?

All the numbers are uncertain, but data is being collected so we can begin to assess the consequences. HiDef have seen many dead birds at sea in our footage – a simply terrible sight. But where does this take us? We can begin to make population models. Our modellers need data to calculate scenarios. We are working with industry and conservation bodies to log the consequences and look to the future.

Through 2023 there has been glimmers of hope in these dark times in some areas. Gannets are showing signs of immunity in the form of breeding normally while exhibiting blackened irises, instead of the normal sky blue, which has been associated with HPAI infection. Sandwich tern colonies have reformed in new areas and are breeding again. Great skua chicks are now fledging from the remnant colonies in the Scottish Islands.  Are these signs of hope? There are scores of examples of species being hit hard by singular events in the past and making a fight back. One group to look to at a time of despair are seals. They were globally diminished by phocine distemper in 1988 and it returned in 2002, but populations have largely rebounded through to today. Survival of the fittest? We can only hope.

 

Australia Wind Energy 2023 – a movement begins

Australia Wind Energy 2023 – a movement begins

It was a pleasure to see the energy and passion at the AuWE2023 with which Australia is looking forward to a sustainable future through the development of offshore wind! Equipped with meaningful insights, perspectives, and so many new valuable and appreciated connections we can’t wait to contribute our part to this movement.

We are proud that Martin Scott was able to emphasize the importance of biodiversity conservation in the panel talk “Forging a Sustainable Future for Australia’s Offshore Wind Industry”. Alongside all the challenges of infrastructure expansion and supply chain constraints, the protection of marine wildlife must not be neglected.

A special highlight was also the opportunity to attend the launch of the WOW (Women of Offshore Wind) organisation, which has set the ambitious goal of achieving gender diversity and equality on the path to sustainability. Let’s make it happen together!

Contact HiDef’s representative in Australia, Maria Gädeke, if you would like to learn more about digital aerial surveying down under.

+61 (0) 402 230 352

Email: m.gaedeke@bioconsult-sh.de

 

HiDef congratulate Dr Kelly Macleod on promotion.

HiDef congratulate Dr Kelly Macleod on promotion.

We are happy to announce the promotion of Dr Kelly Macleod to Associate Director.

Kelly has been building the HiDef consultancy team since joining the company and has delivered a number of significant projects for clients and been key to our delivery of science outputs. With her strong work ethic, scientific knowledge and people skills, Kelly is a real asset to the team.

Last week she was welcomed in her new role by HiDef owner Dr Georg Nehls at a Board meeting in Paris.

 

HiDef consultancy team undertake seabird colony counts.

HiDef consultancy team undertake seabird colony counts.

HiDef is so much more then aerial surveys! This week our consultancy team is undertaking seabird colony counts, contributing to the effort to understand the aftermath of avian flu.

If you’re looking for top ornithology consultancy services, please get in touch!

HiDef boost Australia team

HiDef boost Australia team

Maria Gädeke has joined the HiDef Australia team and will be based out of Melbourne. Moving over from Germany Maria brings her engineering, logistics and wildlife skills to boost our expanding offering in the region. Maria has been working with the HiDef system from Germany so is an expert in the niche topic and delicate nature of the service required.

To contact Maria please email:

maria.gaedeke@hidefsurveying.co.uk

 

HiDef celebrate world turtle day

HiDef celebrate world turtle day

It’s world turtle day 🐢

We are celebrating these ancient mariners of the ocean and are lucky enough to record them on our footage frequently. As one of the seas most iconic creatures, turtles face threats on many fronts from smuggling, to water contamination and global warming.

Who doesn’t love a turtle?

HiDef visit Kincardine Floating Offshore Wind Farm

HiDef visit Kincardine Floating Offshore Wind Farm

HiDef’s Kelly Macleod and Catriona Gall had a great trip out yesterday to Kincardine floating offshore wind farm, off Stonehaven, organised by Flotation Energy. HiDef have worked on the project since inception, so wonderful to see turbines up and close. Plenty of birdlife and some bottlenose dolphins too!

 

 

 

 

HiDef Attend All-Energy Conference 2023!

HiDef Attend All-Energy Conference 2023!

Tomorrow is the big day!

HiDef are excited to be attending the All-Energy Conference 2023 on May 10th and 11th.

Come say hi and join us at the Giant Networking Evening taking place at the Glasgow Science Centre after the event for an evening of networking and socialising, 6pm-8pm May 10th.

Keep an eye out for Martin, Dilwyn and Natalie!

We hope to see you there!

 

HiDef celebrates King’s Coronation and raises money for charity

HiDef celebrates King’s Coronation and raises money for charity

HiDef celebrated the King’s Coronation by having a buffet in the office and raising money for the ‘Smile’ Charity. It provides safe surgery each year for thousands of children with Cleft Pallet in third world countries, this charity is close to one of our colleagues heart, therefore we are delighted to have been able to raise enough money for four children to have this life changing operation.

Home | Smile Train

 

 

Workington Zebra Finches win Junior Plate final!

Workington Zebra Finches win Junior Plate final!

Did someone say winners?!

Huge congratulations to the Workington Zebra Finches Woman’s RUFC who won the Junior Plate final on Monday, 27-22

A massive well done to HiDef’s Nicole Benson & Katie Davis who were part of the team and victory!

We hope you are celebrating big! 🎉🥂

#upthefinches

 

HiDef attend Australian Wind Industry Summit

HiDef attend Australian Wind Industry Summit

It’s the Australian Wind Industry Summit, hosted by the Clean Energy Council, this Thursday 4th May in Melbourne. Keep an eye out for Will Houghton, our research engineer on the ground, for all your wildlife digital aerial surveying needs.

 

ADDRESS:

The Observatory,

Dobies Business Park,

Lillyhall, Workington,

Cumbria, CA14 4HX

Tel: 01946 814463

Registered in England and Wales No. 5587044

Registered Office: The Observatory, Dobies Business Park, Lillyhall, Workington, Cumbria, CA14 4HX

Designed by furness.media