On April 15, the bird of prey conservation expert at BSPB, Dr. Dimitar Demerdzhiev, found a new pair of Imperial eagles in South-eastern Bulgaria. With it, the number of pairs in our country becomes 36, and the inspection of nests and occupied territories continues, and this number may increase.
The pair is from young birds that occupied one of the artificial nests installed within the framework of the project “Implementation of measures from the Action Plan for the Conservation of the Eastern Imperial Eagle (Aquila heliaca) in the Republic of Bulgaria” (BG16M1OP002-3.027-0005)
The nest was installed in September last year and very quickly fulfilled its mission - to attract young pairs of eagles to nest in unoccupied but suitable breeding territories.
The results so far show that more than 25% of the artificial nests become home to Imperial eagles. This is one of the most effective conservation measures, as building a new nest is a difficult and energy-consuming task, especially for young pairs of Imperial Eagles.
The installation of a nest takes about a day, as the base is prepared in advance from branches in the shape of a wheel, which is mounted on the tree using alpine technique. More branches are woven in there to make it massive and strong.
It takes about a day to install a nest. The base of a wheel-shaped branch is mounted on a tree using an alpine technique. More branches are added to make it massive and solid. It reaches a diameter of 1.5 to 2 meters, a thickness of up to 2 m, and sometimes weighs about 200 kg. It has been used by eagles sometimes for decades. The most appropriate time for the installation of an artificial nest is the end of autumn and the beginning of winter so that in winter or early spring the eagles can occupy and finish them.
A total of 40 nests will be installed in habitats suitable for the species within the project.
The project is funded by the Operational Programme “Environment”, under priority axis NATURA 2000, and biodiversity, procedure “Measures to improve the conservation status of birds – 2”, co-financed by the European Union through the European Structural and Investment funds.
Photo: © Dimitar Demerdziev