The compilation of the annual gallery for 2017 has been finished. Photos taken in Northern Ukraine depict well-known and new individuals of the monitored pairs. Only 36 of thousands of pictures taken with the main purpose to regularly identify local Short-toed Eagles individually have been selected for the represented gallery.
Within the framework of the Turjánvidék LIFE project, which aims the preservation of habitats of such species as the endangered Hungarian Meadow Viper (Vipera ursinii rakosiensis), two Ecotone GPS-GSM trackers were bought in 2016. The main aim was to follow the life of a Short-toed Eagle pair residing close to and hunting regularly on viper habitats. Since the capture of the adult male failed in 2017, experts marked the offspring of this pair with the transmitter /map/. The chick was named Örs, an ancient Hungarian name meaning «human», «man» or «hero» but also a name of a Hungarian tribe from ancient times.
The other transmitter was deployed on a repatriated individual in 2016, which died two months later in Poland. Its tracks are not available on the aforementioned website yet, however, another post will appear here if so.
Compiling of the next annual gallery has been started, the gallery of photos taken in different regions of Northern Ukraine this year. Each Short-toed Eagle identified individually is indicated, as always, in captions by a letter and a year of the first representation in photo galleries on the site. The collection will be updated after the season.
Guilad Friedemann and the team started the live stream of another nest of the same Short-toed Eagle pair in the Judean Foothills /map/ this year, since April 2nd. As well as last year, the broadcast is available on the Israeli Birding Portal. For more details, also, please visit the Facebook community page of the Israel Raptor Nest Cam project.
Short videos representing scenes of life of Short-toed Eagles in Northern Ukraine have been compiled from those that were shot in previous year. Also, you can view here a few tables containing statistical data collected in the region within 2004-2016 years and processed to a certain extent. They include: general breeding success, frequency of nesting tree change, distances between two nesting trees occupied by one pair in two consecutive seasons and between all nesting trees at the same breeding sites, nesting tree diameter, nest height, mean nest departure dates, reproduction rate of certain pairs.
These amazing pictures and text were published in the latest La Plume du Circaète. Few of them were included in the previous galleries of Bernard Joubert on our site. Then, several new photos taken in March 2016 have been added and described by the author. Many thanks to him for sharing the pictures and especially for detailed comments on them, also to Ferenc and Gábor Papp for their kind help in the translation!
Moments of life
During these 20 years, while we have been following the Short-toed Eagles, we could obtain numerous pictures taken in ideal conditions, some of which we later published, however, I never played with the thought seriously that I should take advantage of it since photography is very laborious and has little use in conservation.
Nevertheless, in 2010, I decided that I would give it a try at a nest site where I could do it without any disturbance. In January, I built a hide, which I dug in the ground about twenty metres from the nest. I made a frame of beech and covered it with smaller pine branches. This nest site seemed to attract this particular pair, they visited it during last autumn several times.
I made myself comfortable in the hide in the first days of March, not knowing how remarkable moments and wonderful events of the everyday life I would experience soon.
I used a quite mediocre Nikon camera with 110 mm equivalent focus length*, but still I could record their whole breeding cycle except incubation without being noticed by them.
I would like to share a few pictures…
* – also, photos taken with Panasonic Lumix FZ1000 are included.
Here is the next annual gallery of pictures taken in Kiev, Chernihiv and Sumy Regions of Northern Ukraine in 2016. Short-toed Eagles of local pairs monitored during more than 10 years are captured in them. All the birds are indicated in captions by a letter and a year of the first representation in photo galleries on our site, starting with A11 – the old, very striped and dark-spotted, rather small but aggressive female living in the Mizhrichynskyi Nature Park /map/.