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Blog posts related to Steppe eagles trapped and tracked from Oman in 2017 can be found on the Egyptian vulture blog

Friday, March 29, 2019

One eagle still in Yemen

by Mike McGrady, Andrew Spalton, Bernd Meyburg and Faisal Al Lamki

Score card so far...

Two satellite tags have failed.  One bird wandered around Yemen after release, but has settled on a rubbish dump, where it is currently (See below).  All other eagles seem to be migrating or have migrated.  One bird disappeared on 9 March west of Salalah, but it may be somewhere out of GSM coverage.  We hope to hear from it soon.

Below is a map of locations for a bird that has been in Yemen for most of its time after release.  For the last few weeks it has been at a rubbish dump just west of Taizz, the third largest city in Yemen.  The maps are of locations for the past week, and a zoomed in view showing that it is spending time around a rubbish dump.  This bird should migrate soon.  It is the only one that has not left southern Arabia.

Locations of Steppe eagle 182 just west of Taizz, Yemen during 1 week in March 2019.
Zoomed in version of the map above.  Red polygon is the dumpsite.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Migration is well underway.

by Mike McGrady, Faisal Al Lamki, Bernd Meyburg and Andrew Spalton

Well, there seems to be only one eagle that has not left its wintering location.  All the others are at various locations along their spring migration path.  Below is a map of eight of the tracked eagles since they started migration.  185, 186 and 187 are already in the breeding range (Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan).  184 and 162312 are in Iran.  183 and 105 are in Saudi Arabia; 105 actually made it to Iran, but backtracked to Saudi for some reason.  Of course there are other birds that are being tracked.  They seem mostly to be doing about the same thing as the mapped birds.  [If you double-click on the map, it should open up in a new window and be easier to view.]

Maps of 8 Steppe eagles migrating from Arabia during spring 2019.

Saturday, March 9, 2019

184 retreats from Straits of Hormuz

by Andrew Spalton, Bernd Meyburg, Faisal Al Lamki and Mike McGrady

Well, it seems like 184 didn't want to try to cross the Straits of Hormuz.  Despite being a rather narrow water crossing, there is little evidence that many migrating raptors move between Iran and Arabia via the Straits of Hormuz (either in autumn or spring).  The species that do are the more active flyers: falcons and harriers. 

Movements of a Steppe eagle (184) as it is migrating north.  It flew to the northernmost point of Musandam, then turned south, and will now, presumably fly around the Arabian Gulf on its way north.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

184 migrating north through the Samail Gap

by Mike McGrady, Faisal Al Lamki and Bernd Meyburg

Just a quick post, mostly of Omani interest... 184 has migrated through Oman and was by this evening was moving through the Samail Gap.  It will be interesting to see if it attempts to cross the gulf at Musandam.  I don't think it will.  Eagles tracked two years ago went around via Kuwait and there is little evidence of eagle migration via the Straits of Hormuz,  We'll see.

Movements of Steppe eagle 184 as it migrates north through Oman.

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

185 and 186 leading the pack

by Berrnd Meyburg, Faisal Al Lamki, Andrew Spalton and Mike McGrady

To date, six eagles have started migration, two are in Yemen, and two are still in Salalah.  185 (blue) and 186 (red) are leading the migrating pack and are currently in southern Iran.  The bird that was first caught in 2018 that wintered in central Saudi Arabia is still there.  The gap in the data in southern Saudi was when the birds flew through an area with no GSM network, so could not upload location data.  If they dwell for some time in a network, those data will be uploaded over time.  From about mid-Saudi Arabia the rate of data collection was changed from one every 10 minutes to one every hour.

Bon voyage!

Tracks (20 Feb-5 March) of two Steppe eagles that wintered in Salalah in 2018-19