Little Eagle News

To: "" <>
Subject: Little Eagle News
From: Geoffrey Dabb <>
Date: Wed, 21 Feb 2018 00:58:21 +0000

Well, both no news and a lot of news.


No comments or suggestions on the below summary for the 2017 season, so I’ll proceed to wider publication with that. I need to put something on birding-aus because I see some national implications for broad conservation issues.


I believe the development dispute affecting the Little Eagle (see below) has been settled but is currently subject to the cone of silence.  Will report further when I know more.


An article appeared in the last Canberra Bird Notes, attacking the evidence used in COG’s nomination of the eagle for threatened species status.  I have an uneasy feeling this is related to the  ‘Joint Little Eagle Research Project’ and that the project might be aimed at delisting the Little Eagle as a threatened species.  I am having difficulty finding information about that project as the cone of silence extends there too.  I have begun to burden hard-working public servants with letters to Ministers and FOI requests.  I wish there were another way.




From: Geoffrey Dabb [
Sent: Wednesday, 7 February 2018 10:00 AM
Subject: Strathnairn Little Eagles


Chatline members might not be aware that the Strathnairn pair of Little Eagles (or former pair) is at the centre of a planning dispute.  As a brief summary I attach below a snip from the Ginninderra Falls Association online site:


In that connection, I attach below my draft note on the recent Little Eagle breeding season I circulated on 3 January.  This is still open for additions/corrections.


<< The season began with the publicised return from the Northern Territory of the celebrated Strathnairn aerial-carrying male, and ministerial announcements that the best way to observe Little Eagles was to erect video-cameras at their nests.


As reported in Canberra Bird Notes, the successful 2016 nesters were the long-standing pairs at Strathnairn and Campbell Park. Substantial videocam structures were erected at both nests and neither nest was used in 2017.  Early in the season a different (dark morph) male was shown on video with the presumed Strathnairn female from last season.  As the Strathnairn site and the nearby Lands End site of interest were on former leases now resumed by the Land Development Agency the previous foot access was not possible, and the outcome of further breeding attempts in the West Belconnen area, if any, is not known.  More might be known when the developer-funded team makes a report.


At Campbell Park the presumed pair that had been monitored over several seasons by Michael Lenz used a new nest 350m from the previous one, and raised one young.  Jerry Olsen rediscovered a pair on Black Mountain which raised one young. After that young fledged, it appeared to be wearing a non-solar-powered tracking device (???).


So the confirmed ACT count for the 2017 season is 2 young from 2 nests.  The Sutton Road nest (outside the ACT), first reported on this chatline,  was also successful.


The increased interest in Little Eagles saw some attention focussed on:


(a)    The possible Bibaringa/Mount Stromlo pair  -  some signs of breeding, but no successful nesting so far as I know.

(b)   A probable pair that uses the horse-paddocks east of Gilmore – again, no confirmed successful nesting, which, if any, might have occurred in NSW.


I’d be grateful for any additions, corrections or comments.  Any young from the season’s nesting should now have left the nest – or, if very late, be on the point of doing so.  Flying young could still be in the area and are identifiable by their distinctive rusty juvenile plumage. >>


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