Hopes for up to six new Golden Eagle chicks in south of Scotland

The South of Scotland Golden Eagle Project hope to bring up to six new chicks to the area this year.

The project aims to boost the population of the species in the south of Scotland.

“While the population of Golden Eagles in the main part of Scotland is around 500 pairs, in the South there’s only three pairs, so very small numbers and very isolated from that main population,” explained Project Manager Cat Barlow.

“If we did nothing I suppose the population in the South could dwindle and the species could become locally extinct.”

In August the £1.3 million project suffered a set-back when one bird, Beaky, attacked and killed another.

“Last year we released three young birds and unfortunately one of them, Beaky, returned tot he site and was being aggressive to the young birds which was so unusual.”

“It was certainly a shame, the previous projects had never experienced anything like it having used the same release site each year so it was something we hadn't anticipated at all. But we’ve learnt from it and are hoping to find a different release site for this summer just to make sure we don’t have the same issue again.”

“So we're looking to collect more juveniles in about June time, it's difficult to know how many it depends completely on the breeding season in the highlands so if we could get another 5 or 6 birds this year that would be absolutely brilliant but we’ll have to wait and see.”

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