Already a dead Golden eagle was found on February 25 at a wind turbine generator in the Spring Valley, a place with a dense population of eagles. Those who knew thae area had predicted eagle mortality was likely, but no one thought it would be so soon after the project was completed.
According to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Pattern Energy contacted US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) as required and preserved the carcass for them. FWS has confirmed it was a strike that killed the eagle.
The golden eagle death triggered a requirement that the company survey all 66 turbines in the next survey period.
Because the death was at the start of the nesting season the company may need to move up their surveys for nests and do some analysis to determine if the eagle killed was resident and part of a nesting pair, or a transient.
BLM says that the project has now "reached but not exceeded" the take threshold for golden eagle of one take. If they get another take this may trigger curtailment and other measures.