Hieraaetus wahlbergi  Wahlberg's Eagle  Bruinarend
Wahlbergs Eagle
Bateleur Nature Reserve, Sep 2019

Regular summer visitor. A breeding migrant that occurs widely across the Waterberg (where currently recorded in 37% of the pentads), the birds arriving in late Aug and departing in Mar/Apr. Individuals typically return to previously used nest sites where they usually join up with the mate from the previous year. Together they renovate the nest, or build a new one nearby.
A breeding bird fitted in 2017 with a satellite tracker close to Lephalale left on 23 Mar and travelled 2122 km in 7 days. It crossed the equator and spent the winter months ranging widely between Chad and S Sudan before returning south where it was lost en route. A calculated guess suggests that 100-150 pairs breed in the Waterberg.
Wahlbergs Eagle
Modimolle, Jan 2018
Wahlberg's Eagle nest
Modimolle, Sep 2018

A typical nest is shown here, the incubating bird's head just visible. Pairs build the nest in a fork high in a tall tree, usually choosing the largest in the area, often using a Boekenhout as they've done here. Successful nests are reused annually but some pairs move between two or more alternate nests. The nest is smaller than those of other eagles and, even in the absence of the birds, is usuallly identifiable by its size. They lay their single egg in September or October and the chick fledges in January.
Wahlbergs Eagle in flight
Lindani, Feb 2018
Wahlbergs Eagle in flight
Lindani, Feb 2018
Wahlbergs Eagle
Modimolle

Unusual pale form, a female that bred for several years outside Modimolle.


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