The year's cohort of seven young birds were marked by Roy Dennis on the 11th August and released on the 13th August 2005. The released birds attached to the food dump quickly and they enjoyed good weather shortly after release. Orange 9 was with the birds near the release site on the 14th and 15th August. By the 16th it had moved to another location some 1 km away, whereas 5 of the birds were near one food dump and a sixth was at another food dump. A third food dump was established for Orange 9 and by the 18th this food dump had been attended by Orange 9. It was radio tracked with the others on the 19th but was roosting by itself again on the 21st August before rejoining the other birds during the 22nd. It was known to have left Glenveagh during the next radio check on the 26th August, whilst the remaining six birds were seen on subsequent days. An accurate report of an Orange tagged eagle, feeding on a dead sheep at Effishmore, Inishowen (41 km NE of the release site) on the 31st August must relate to Orange 9.
On the 11th August, during a visit to this year's breeding site two eagles (a female and male) were seen flying together above the nest. The female was in heavy moult at that time. We are going to assume that it is the original pair, Yellow Diagonal Bar and Yellow Two Spot, but we may not be in a position to confirm this, by reading wing tags, until next spring.
On the 14th August, Blue 3 was seen flying over the food dump in Glenveagh and it landed briefly near the release cages. It has not been seen since. This male's radio transmitter is missing its antenna. But it has been seen periodically, on its own, in the same territory for over a year.
Green K, Green O and Green T were noted alive in the Bluestacks in August. On the 17th and 19th August, Red F was radio tracked near where the two red tagged birds were seen together in July and where it had been radio tracked in early May.
There was an unconfirmed record of two Golden Eagles over the Gap of Dungloe, Co Kerry on the 7th August, by an English birdwatcher familiar with Buzzards. In Connemara, to the west of Lough Corrib, there was a report of a single eagle on the 6th August, followed by a report of 2 eagles nearby on the 16th August and a third record of an eagle in the same area on the 3rd September. On the 4th September, there was a report of an eagle on Inishboifin Island (Galway) flying toward Achill Island, which may tie in with local accounts of German and American visitors reporting eagles from the nearby Rinyvale Headland during the summer.
A report of a Yellow tagged bird, flying through sea mist on the North Inishowen Peninsula in early August, may relate to one of two Yellow tagged birds not recorded since November 2003 or earlier and highlights the difficulty in locating dispersing birds. The Sea Eagle Project in Scotland got 570 records, including 214 with wing tag details, in 2004 alone. In comparison, since our project began in 2001, we have only received a handful of wing tag records identifying an individual Golden Eagle outside of Glenveagh National Park. The Golden Eagle behaviour and habitat selection and the paucity of upland bird watching here will make it very difficult to gather individual wing tag records before the birds begin to settle and breed.
This year we have attached a Satellite tag to Orange 3 and Orange 4, the largest male and female respectively, in the hope that when these birds disperse next spring we may be able to identify their dispersal patterns. This Golden Eagle tracking initiative is being carried out in partnership with Dr Mike McGrady, Natural Research, Ltd. To date Orange 3 and Orange 4 have remained near the release site food dumps.