E.ON poles accommodate nests for 3000 stork pairs in Hungary

Stork nesting boxes to be installed at more than 100 sites.

E.ON is taking great effort to make its network safer for birds via an investment of hundreds of millions of forints into infrastructure that protects thems, including the installation of nesting boxes to protect storks.

Nest holders being installed on utility poles by the energy firm will help storks breed safely. This season, more than 100 new nest boxes will also be installed, most of them in Baranya, Tolna and Somogy counties. Nests which have been damaged, or collapsed during previous storms, will be demolished and rebuilt with reinforcements. On the nest supports provided by E.ON, the National Parks’ nature keepers reinforce the nest base with a flexible wicker base to make the nest attractive for the birds.

Storks like to build their nests, which can weigh several kilogrammes, up to a metre high,which poses a threat to both the birds and the power grid. With E.ON’s help, conservation experts can ensure that the birds can nest more safely, while the power supply is also maintained. Via the new nest boxes, there are now more than 3,000 nesting sites for stork pairs on E.ON’s electricity poles in Transdanubia and Pest County this year. At the largest landfill site in Pest County, a favourite feeding ground for storks, cable lines will be laid underground.

To protect storks and birds of prey, such as bloodhounds, hawks, or owls, E.ON has continued its network upgrades to ensure that elements around nests, hunting and feeding areas are bird-friendly during the autumn-winter season, as it usually does at this time of year. The use of covered insulation, long-span insulators, bird perches and wing splays allows raptors to use the posts as safe perches for stalking their prey. The energy company is also installing new nesting boxes for the saker falcon, the Bird of the Year in 2024.

The precise areas where intervention is needed to benefit birds are determined jointly by E.ON, the relevant national parks, and the Hungarian Ornithological and Nature Conservation Society (MME).

Bird-friendly network projects are ongoing throughout the year, and in recent months alone E.ON has carried out such network interventions at more than 100 sites. Financed entirely by the energy company, bird protection upgrades for the 2023-24 season will cost hundreds of millions of forints within   E.ON Hungária Group’s territory.