28 May 2012

Vardø eagles - Clash of the titans

White-tailed Eagles are impressive birds. With a wingspan of 2.5 meters one might think that they are built for slow and powerfull movement, but these birds are giant aerial acrobats. 

The eagle photos where taken just a five minute walk, and a five minute boat trip from our house. For three years we have been living and working in Varanger.  We are allways looking into new possibilities for birding experiences in Varanger, and having such a wide variety of extreme nature experiences at our doorstep is fantastic. Lately, however we have been doing most of our birding from our office window. We have been working constantly for several weeks on finishing a destination development study, and haven't had much time to go birding (exept for this brief eagle adventure).The 125 page study documents the past three years of pro nature projects we have been involved with. It also features a 70 page mapping of birds, sites and potentials for bird hide development, photo hides, etc. Varanger has been a well known name within the international birding scene for many years. We have spent much time raising local awareness of Varangers unique qualities. It has been three years and thousands of meetings with lots of great people (and birds). We will make an article very soon with on the destination development study. For now we feature the map above (page 3/123). Note that the Varanger fjord is Norways only fjord facing east, sheltering it from the heaviest westerly winds. The fjord is shallow and thanks to the warming Gulf Stream it is ice free in winter. This combination makes the Varanger fjord one of the most varied and life rich places in the Arctic.

On our latest bird adventure Arne Moen joined us. He is heading a major project for the National Tourist Routes in Vardø. They commissioned us to make another study on the birdlife in Vardøs Steilnes area, and to make proposals for fascilitating for birds, birders and locals. Now we are putting the final touches on the bird hide at Steilnes, which will be built within a few weeks. 

For now we present the eagles of Vardø, as we could experience them when we teamed up with Per Ivar Grunnes from Vardø, with his RIB. Thanks for a great trip! Contact us or Per Ivar if you are interested in some close encounters with eagles, alcids and gulls around Vardøs Hornøya and Reinøya nature reserve. We are still exploring possibilities for new bird adventures around Vardø with Per Ivar (more niceness coming up later - how about snorkeling with alcids?!). Per Ivar will be running trips from Vardø harbour during this summer (tlf: +47 482 11 909 or mail: perigru@hotmail.com). It is spectacular!

Young eagles showing of aerial skills

A 2nd calender year bird (approx one year old). One of few birds you can measure by square meters!

An adult (probably 5 cy) White-tailed Eagle teaching a young eagle a lesson. A meeting of giants.

We will be back soon with more on pro nature destination development in Varanger. For now we hope hope you enjoy these eagle photos. 

To be continued..

Tormod A. / Biotope