© Mihail Iliev
For the first time in our country, a team from the Bulgarian Society for the Protection of Birds (BSPB) has registered a nest of Lesser Spotted Eagle with two juveniles in it. The successful rearing of two juveniles is an extremely rare occurrence for this species. Usually, there is only one offspring. This is the first documented case in Bulgaria.
The two young birds were observed during regular monitoring of Lesser Spotted Eagle nests carried out within the framework of the LIFE project “LIFE for Eagle’s habitats” The nest is located in the Natura 2000 protected area “Batova” in Northeast Bulgaria.
Scientific research in Central and Northern Europe shows that only 1.5-3.5% of nesting attempts by the species result in two successfully fledged juveniles. In fact, two offspring are not uncommonly hatched, but usually, the smaller one dies within 10-15 days after hatching.
“At the moment, the young birds are one month old, which gives us confidence that the critical period has passed, and both of them will successfully take flight over the Batova River valley. We will continue to monitor the nest in the coming weeks,” shared BSPB expert Mihail Iliev, who discovered the nest in 2021. Over the past two years, the pair has raised only one offspring each.
The monitoring activities of the species are carried out within the framework of the LIFE project ” LIFE for Eagle’s habitats,” which is the long-term preservation of the Lesser Spotted Eagle population by securing the protection and sustainable management of the species’ nesting and foraging habitats, as well as the creation of new ones. The project partners are the Executive Forest Agency, Bulgarian Society for the Protection of Birds, SouthEastern State Company – Sliven, and NorthEastern State Comapny – Shumen.