The Next Imperial Generation

2012_07_10 CdC - Spanish Imperial Eagle - juvenile (Aquila adalberti) 07
Spanish Imperial Eagle (Aquila adalberti)

Recently on a trip to a road that shall remain unnamed in an unnamed area of Ciudad Real, I had the great fortune to come across a juvenile Spanish Imperial Eagle (Aquila adalberti) in an oak tree. It’s a special experience finding one of these great raptors. It was a juvenile, of this year I would say, and looking to be in good health and well able to fly as it demonstrated to me. I pulled over at least 600 metres away and stayed for what must have been a few hours, until evening fell. I was enraptored (sic). A lot of the time it just sat in the shade, like myself, as the heat is pretty hard-core here at the moment. This of course didn’t help with heat haze affecting the shots nor the amount of liquids I had to drink. As the sun started dipping somewhat and the temperature eased off it took advantage of some stiff breezes to just lift upwards and then settle down on the branches again.

2012_07_17 CdC - Spanish Imperial Eagle - juvenile (Aquila adalberti) 01
Spanish Imperial Eagle (Aquila adalberti)

Finally as the sun was setting behind the hill up it goes and does a big circle around the field and back to the tree. What a bird, and what an experience. It was marvellous also to see a new member of this endangered family showing off its proud head, getting to grips with those huge wings and flight, and basically acting all grown up and imperial. After losing six to poisoning in January here in Ciudad Real it warms the heart to see a new generation.

Thank goodness for the resilience of an endangered species, big lenses and extenders is all I can say. Someday soon I’ll get that Swarovski scope…someday…

2012_07_17 CdC - Spanish Imperial Eagle - juvenile (Aquila adalberti) 04
Spanish Imperial Eagle (Aquila adalberti)

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