The white-tailed eagle is the largest bird of prey found in the UK. However, this bird of prey was missing since 1780. It was quite strange that the white-tailed eagle went missing in the UK since they were still present in Scotland up till 1916.
However, good news comes in 2020. This majestic beast has been spotted again in the UK after 240 years. It has a wing-span of 2.5 meters, making it a majestic and scary bird of prey coursing through the sky.
A group of white-tailed eagles was released in 2019 into the Isle of Wight. Forestry England and Roy Dennis Wildlife Foundation took it upon themselves to track four of these birds via GPS. If you are a common person in the UK, you might have recognized the white-tailed eagle as it swept past you. The bird has sparkling golden eyes and a black-ridged tail. Plus, it has yellow legs, beak, and talons, all of it making the bird stand out.
A white-tailed eagle is considered a generalist predator. They tend to spend a lot of time perching in high places. After a considerable amount of time, they usually take off to even greater heights.
The tracking devices were useful to provide necessary information about the habits of the white-tailed eagles. During the winter months, they remained sedentary, as per the tracking data. It was only after the weather took a better turn that two of these white-tailed eagles – C393 and G318 – were found flying in Norfolk, Kent, and Somerset. They even took off to the North of Yorkshire.
As per researchers from the Netherlands, the white-tailed eagle mostly stays in densely populated areas. Hence, England should not pose a problem to them as it seems like these birds of prey can be referred to as urban birds who are well-adapted to urban conditions.
The diet of the white-tailed eagle is quite simple. They go for fish during the summer and spring seasons. Later on, as winter starts unfolding, they might shift their diet and swoop in for water birds. Like most birds of prey, they are known to target smaller animals like hares and rabbits too.
Many campaigners are asking the public to click photographs of white-tailed eagles if they spot one nearby and record it. Not only will it help them to gain an insight into the behavior of these birds of prey, but it will also create a sense of accomplishment that the renewed introduction of white-tailed eagles into the grounds of the UK has been a success.