Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Sad End for a Young White-tailed Eagle

Over the weekend I read the sad news that one of the east Scotland released White-tailed Eagles had been killed in February after a collision with a wind turbine at one of the Ochil Hills wind farms.  The eagle was RedT, one of those released in 2011 as part of the east Scotland reintroduction.

I know you shouldn't have favourites when it comes to wildlife, they're all special in their own right, but RedT was one of the young eagles I had watched at the release site in Fife along with several of his fellow 'reds'. Once they have an identifiable marking, such as a wing tag, you know who you are watching, and the bird becomes an individual.

RedT had also been seen at nearby Argaty Red Kites, earning the nickname 'Mr T'.

Fast forward two years to October 2013, when I had a surprise encounter with him in the local hills.  You can read about that here  'T' was continually being radio tracked in the area and at the time I thought I had got a glimpse of a 'T' on his tag.  Unfortunately, the same hills where I had that exciting reunion was also to be where his life was taken far too soon. He has become the first White-tailed Eagle in Scotland to be killed at a wind farm site.

Every time I walked in the hills, usually at least once a week, I would look out for RedT, never knowing if I would get lucky again and spot him. It's sad to think that I will never see him again.  I had hoped one day he might have settled down in this area with a mate.  We will never know.  I can only hope that he didn't suffer at the end.

Fly free RedT and thanks for the memories.


Frank said...

That's a sad ending for such a young bird.

Karen the Artist said...

I was walking in the hills yesterday morning and looked over to where I had seen RedT before, heart sank knowing what had happened. Just glad the wind farm I always see is not the one where he was killed. You have to wonder, were it not for his radio transmitter sending out the mortality signal so he could be found, would he have been disposed of without trace? & there is application to extend the wind farm in question.