Wednesday 8 April 2020

More on White-tailed Eagles

Wednesday 8 April

The tale of the wandering White-tailed Eagles on the Isle of Wight back in the UK seems to have drawn some interesting comments.  I was delighted to receive an email this morning from relatively close neighbour, Birgit Fastrup who kindly passed on the following information plus a link to a report from her native Denmark.

White-tailed Eagle Haliaeetus albicilla from Internet (Countryfile magazine)

Now here is a little story for you:

The population of white-tailed eagles has increased in later years, resulting in the following incident:

Two of them fighting got entangled, one with the claws deep into the thigh of the other. The video shows people getting them separated, after which they both flew away.

The report is written in Danish and includes further links but I simply used the right-click facility for an automatic translation and the result is given below (with apologies to Danish speakers).  Enjoy and many thanks Birgit for passing it on so that other readers can enjoy the article..

There is a video on the original report showing how the two eagles' fight was stopped.  If not a danish speaker, I suggest you read the translation below then click on the lick above to go to the original post.  The picture of the video appears at the top and simply select the "Play" arrow.

Wild video: Sea eagles in fighting had to be separated

What should have been a regular walk on Tuesday for 76-year-old Ebba Christensen and her husband Ole of 77 ended up with a somewhat more unusual experience.

Ebba Christensen from Store Heddinge on Stevns tells BT this

“We pass an open field where a man stands and looks out at something moving in the field. Initially, we thought it was a dog, but as we got closer we could see that it was some birds, ”Ebba Christensen says.

Precisely, there were two sea eagles locked in fight with each other in the field.
"It looked awful, and one had the claws right in the thigh of the other," says Ebba Christensen.
In an attempt to save the two birds from killing each other, her husband Ole Christensen and the other man chose to try to separate the birds, while Ebba Christensen recorded a video that can be seen at the top of the article.

The rescue operation by the two men succeeded, after which the birds rose to the air. However, that did not mean that the sea eagles had finished fighting.

Instead, the eagles swooped on each other again before one was defeated and a third sea eagle arrived, and flew toward Stevns Klint with the immediate victor, before the loser of the gloom flew in the opposite direction to Sigerslev Mose.

The sea eagles also use the claws to catch their prey. Here you see a sea eagle in search of the Eagle Reserve in Vendsyssel.   Photo: Kaare Smith

Despite the two big birds armed with pointed claws and beak, Ebba and Ole Christensen had no doubt that they had to do something.

"It is terrible to see animals suffer, and they will continue to one door. If we could save them, why shouldn't we? ”She says.

Despite the unusual sight in Store Heddinge, however, it is not so rare an event that sea eagles fight to the death with each other.

This is according to Bo Kayser, chairman of the Danish Ornithological Association in Storstrøm.
"It happens very often at the moment, because the sea eagles hatch eggs and try to defend their territory," he says.

Bo Kayser goes on to say that sea eagles typically start by fighting in the air, after which they swirl together on the ground, which might also indicate the case in the video match.
Although they managed to separate the birds and save their lives, at least for a while, Bo Kayser should not necessarily interfere in the animals' internal struggles.
“In general, I think the species would do better without humans. So I think it's best if you don't interfere. But it is a wonderful story at the same time that both birds survive and get on their wings again. "

Check out the accompanying website at for the latest sightings, photographs and additional information

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