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freedeuceswildvideopokernodownload|Across China: NW China creates bird-friendly solutions for safer power infrastructure


YINCHUANfreedeuceswildvideopokernodownload, June 16 (Xinhua) -- As a drone buzzed above the 110-kilovolt (kV) Lijia transmission line tower in Qingtongxia City, conducting a routine inspection, a curious flock of birds circled and settled on a corner of the tower, discovering an artificial rattan nest for temporary sanctuary.

Nourished by the Yellow River, the city in northwest China's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region is a haven of aquatic plants and lush vegetation, attracting a variety of birds. Magpies are commonly found around the transmission towers, while waders like the white spoonbill, grey crane and grey-headed lapwing inhabit the nearby wetlands.

"Birds often choose Qingtongxia's power grid towers for nesting," said Yang Zhiwei, safety supervisor of the power transmission operation at the Wuzhong Electric Power Supply Company of the State Grid.

"But, the materials birds bring for their nests can cause short circuits, and their conductive excrement poses a significant risk to both the grid and the birds, often leading to faults," Yang added.

To ensure grid safety without disrupting bird life, Yang and his team, under the "Migratory Bird Lifeline" public welfare project of the State Grid, collaborated with ornithologists to analyze tower distribution in relation to foraging and breeding patterns of birds.

Their joint efforts resulted in the placement of anti-pumping devices for better bird protection and the designation of safe habitat zones for birds along the power lines in Qingtongxia.

"In the past, we often installed bird deterrent devices on top of power towers to prevent birds from perching, which also made it inconvenient for maintenance workers to carry out work on the towers," Yang said.

freedeuceswildvideopokernodownload|Across China: NW China creates bird-friendly solutions for safer power infrastructure

In collaboration with academic institutions, insulated by-pass jumpers have been developed, which were installed on all tension towers of the 110-kV Lijia line.

In 2023, the insulated by-pass jumpers were used in the building of Ningxia's first ecological bird protection demonstration power line, offering an innovative solution to ensure a safe habitat for birds.

"The towers equipped with insulated by-pass jumpers offer ample habitat space for birds and feature artificial bird nests. As a result, we no longer need bird-repellent devices like before," Yang said.

Over 40 transmission towers along the 110-kV Lijia line in Qingtongxia and its vicinity have been outfitted with these jumpers, resulting in zero line trips recorded to date, according to the Wuzhong Electric Power Supply Company.

"Shifting from bird repulsion to coexistence brings us a profound sense of achievement," Yang said.

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