Two emu farmers in southwestern Nova Scotia say they can’t keep raising their birds because nearby wind farms are killing their flock. Debi Van Tassel, of Ocean Breeze Emu Farm in Digby, said she and her husband Davey are spending this week selling and harvesting the last of their emus, often farmed for their oil and meat.
“When we watched the birds in here die, when we started with 27 and ended up with seven, when we had to watch them die every day, I said to Davey, ‘We can’t do it anymore,'” said Van Tassel. “We know we are doing the best because we know they’re going to go somewhere they’re not going to be abused by turbines.”
Nova Scotia Power, the province’s electric utility, built a wind turbine farm behind the couple’s home almost three years ago. The 20 turbines can power more than 10,000 homes, but Van Tassel said the turbines are noisy and have distressed her birds. The Van Tassels said since then, their emus have gotten thinner and haven’t been yielding as many eggs. They said the eggs that do arrive, don’t survive — in 2010, 30 of their 38 emus died. Read article