The mystery of a dead sea eagle, released in 2008, whose body disappared is reported in the Scotsman today:
This is an ongoing Police investigation so we cannot comment on it here except to say please contact Northern Constabulary if you have any information about this bird.
Always the way, just finished updating the blog and got a text from Iain at Vane Farm to say that he has just radio-tracked turquoiseH back at Loch Leven, lets hope she sticks around until the weekend!
Its the start of another long breeding season for white-tailed eagles across Europe and it sounds like things are starting slowly both in Norway and on the west coast, no surprise given the long winter we have had. At this time of year we start applying for licences and getting logistics sorted for our next eagle import in June. We have imported 64 birds so far and this will be the fifth year of the project. As our 2007 and 2008 birds reach breeding age we are also keeping a close eye on what they are up to. Sightings have been coming in regularly over the last couple of months and together with the radio tracking that volunteers and myself have been doing it gets increasingly hard to hold the information on where all the surviving birds are or have been, luckily we do have a big database! The names of eagles in brackets are those named by primary schools in Fife in 2009.
Several sea eagles used Loch Leven as their winter roost site again this year, being seen daily from the cafe catching ducks and rabbits until the 18th January. One of these birds was turquoiseZ (Norbett) who left in late December, moving onto Loch Lomond by mid January. TurquoiseH stuck around longer and was briefly joined by some 2010 birds (yellow7, yellowH & yellow1) who have remained very close to the release site only venturing further away to Loch Leven in mid January. Other 2010 birds have been more adventurous. Two are currently on Mull, a female, yellowC and male yellowY and I watched them chasing an otter around a loch shore to try and steal its food on Saturday, so they are learning some more intricate hunting skills fast at only 9 months old! The third 2009 bird – turquoiseX (Hamish) who spent last winter at Loch Leven and was there in late autumn also headed west to Mull at the end of December. Turquoise3 (Eco) are also back in Fife.
YellowO the small male who was bullied at the food dump reached the Isle of Bute before returning further east to Loch Tay last week. His sibling the much larger yellowE was a regular sight around the Ythan estuary during December. Another male yellowZ who spent time at Skinflats on the Forth in the autumn has been spending time around Doune in Stirlingshire and yellowK (female) has been in the Crieff area.
The communal roost site first used in September 2008 on the Tay estuary has been used by up to eight birds, including turquoise3 (Eco) and birds from each of the last three years of releases. Its great seeing them regularly over the Tay.
Loch of Lintrathen in Angus is also regularly being used by turquoiseK a 2009 female. One of our 2008 males has moved south from Angus back into central Fife mixing with 2010 birds and turquoise8 (Fionn) and trying to catch whooper swans on small wetlands and lochs. Whilst ‘Ardmore’ a 2008 female is still around Ardnamurhcan on the west coast.