We've now changed the look of this page to allow you to keep track of two new white-tailed eagle chicks from Mull. And now, as promised, we've added some new photos of them so you'll know what they look like - if you're ever lucky enough to see them! Thanks to Katie for sorting that. I love the shot of Oran on his nest greeting FCS climber Nick Purdy. Not a very friendly welcome! Oran and Venus are joining our first two chicks from Loch Frisa in 2008, Mara and Breagha. Don't forget to use the + and -and arrow buttons on the maps to zoom into see where they've been and when. They were all fitted with light weight, solar powered satellite tags to help us study the dispersal of immature sea eagles away from their nest areas. They were fitted by Roy Dennis from the Highland Foundation for Wildlife with help from our tree climber Justin Grant. Our thanks to the private landowners concerned and to Forestry Commission Scotland, their climbers and rangers for all their help on the day. The tags were funded by Scottish Natural Heritage and the data will be collected and mapped by John Sutherland and Sally Fisher from the RSPB's Data Management Unit. The all important analysis of the satellite data will be carried out by Natural Research Ltd on behalf of the Sea Eagle Project Team. Our thanks to them all and to the RSPB's web team for helping us get all this information out to you!
Oran is a fine, dark male chick who fledged from his mighty tree top nest in July. He is named after St Oran who is believed to have travelled through Mull to the Holy Isle of Iona in the 12th Century. We hope that our young eagle will be watched over and kept safe by his Saintly name sake. Oran is doing well so far. He returned to his nest to be fed quite a few times after his maiden flight which is quite unusual. He may be a bit of big baby and uncertain of launching off on his own into the big wide world. Over the next few months we'll find out how he gets on.
Across a few mountain ridges, from another Mull nest flew a beautiful young female sea eagle called Venus. She is named after the Goddess of love and beauty, flowers and Spring. Venus, the planet, is also the brightest light in the night sky and she appears at dawn and dusk as if to welcome the new day and to signal the approaching night. We couldn't think of a better name for our young female eagle. Like Oran, she too is now venturing further afield and is already well clear of her nest area. The parents of both chicks will happily tolerate their offspring around them for several months to come. They may not be bringing in much, if any, food for them at the moment but they will gladly share a deer, seal or sheep carcass with them. The chicks will know to follow along behind their parents in the expectation of a free handout. Soon though they will start to explore on their own and day by day, week by week, the distance between them and the adults will grow and the family bond will weaken. Unlike Mara and Breagha who spent alot of time together, Oran and Venus will soon be tackling life's challenges alone. This time last year, as Mara and Breagha began longer flights away, they seemed to find some comfort or at least reassurance in each other's company on a regular basis. Life will be very different for young Oran and Venus. We will be watching them as closely as we can but they are wild birds and our role is simply to watch, study, learn and to protect. Our pioneers Mara and Breagha have proven they can survive out there and have now firmly dispersed from Mull. Mara may not be too far away on Loch Sunart but Breagha has ventured further into the north west Highlands. We wonder where the first big flights for Oran and Venus will be to? Will they ever meet up with Mara and Breagha? Stay tuned as we join them all on their extraordinary journeys.
Dave Sexton RSPB Scotland Mull Officer
The Eagle Hide at Loch Frisa is still open! Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10am and 1pm. Call 01680 812 556. Come and see us - and the eagles! Last week Debby and the groups of visitors saw the sea eagles AND the golden eagles - and the first red deer stag of the autumn was heard roaring around Loch Frisa so what are you waiting for? Plan your fall trip to Mull now and capture an autumn moment...visit the Holiday Mull & Iona website for details.
Reply - Hi Ed - if you go to Google Earth, on the left hand side of the screen are listed the things you are following ie White Tailed Sea Eagles, Ospreys - you need to untick the boxes which are labelled Nethy and Deshar, then Save, and that should clear them from the map. I had the same problem for a while!
I only just found out the names of Oran & Venus when they suddenly appeared on my Google Earth. Another pair to follow on the Google Earth. I just wish I knew how to delete Nethy and Deshar's routes from it as it slightly upsets me everytime. I know it's nature but I travelled to see them on a few occasions and followed them on the internet for weeks!!!
Its to help the Sea Eagles that they are tagged, not to hinder them. All of us here want the best for the birds that is one thing i think we all agree on!
The tags clearly have done no damage to the birds or stopped them do what any Sea Eagle does.
All the team on Mull and people have and are doing a great job protecting and helping this bird so it can roam safely without having to worry.
I think its fantastic having these wonderful birds in our country and without RSPB on Mull this wouldn't have happened..
Well HeatherP if it comes and sits on your car bonnet it will be pretty sick.Lots of people me included are not happy that birds that took thousands of years to evolve with hollow bones or at least a very light frame have these plastic weights put on their wing and due to temporary problem(I wonder why)wing tags not on 2008 release.I know lots of clever people disagree with me but it is probably like handicapping you having to carry 3 bags of sugar,you would not be as good as your contemporaries.Suggest these Eagles are so fantastic it doesn't matter much who it is.
Heather stay around till I get there!! Do you still have to book well in advance for trips?
Reply: no that's fine. Maybe a day or two before.
We spend 90% of net income on conservation, public education and advocacy
The RSPB is a member of BirdLife International. Find out more about the partnership
© The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) is a registered charity: England and Wales no. 207076, Scotland no. SC037654