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Innovative Project Uses Drones to Protect Birds from Power Lines

The Conowingo Dam is home to one of the densest bald eagle populations, along with other rare avian species, and our experts are continually evaluating new technologies and strategies to protect local wildlife in this region and across our service area. Recently, our environmental team collaborated with colleagues at PECO and Exelon Generation, as well as the Electric Power Research Institute, on an innovative pilot project to test the use of drones to mark electric transmission lines that run from the Conowingo Dam over the Susquehanna River to Rowlands Island, located in Harford and Cecil counties in Maryland.

We used the drones to install reflective aerial line markers that can help birds avoid contact with power lines, which is a safer and more cost-effective way to place the markers than traditional methods. The project is part of the comprehensive avian protection program we manage to minimize hazardous conditions for birds near energy infrastructure, and the resulting reliability impacts.