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SPEA is an Environmental not-for-profit organization whose mission is to support research and conservation of wild birds and their habitats, by promoting sustainable development for the benefit of future generations.
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Shortage of main prey species could lead Bonneli's Eagles to abandon territories


A A shortage of rabbits and partridges could lead Bonelli’s Eagles to abandon territories. This is the conclusion of a study of prey availability in the Life Rupis project’s study area. The study, carried out by Max Hoppe from the Technical University of Braunschweig, in Germany, will help to inform our habitat management actions.

European Rabbit and Red Partridge are the mainstay of the Bonelli's Eagle diet. In the Life Rupis project we have been monitoring the populations of these two species in the project area. Based on that data, Hoppe used computer modelling to predict how likely it was for these species to be found in different areas. He found that Bonelli’s Eagles don't always occupy the territories with the largest rabbit and partridge populations. This is probably because there are other factors at play, like persecution, other available prey, or competition with species like Golden Eagles. But if rabbit and partridge numbers are very low, Bonelli’s Eagles are likely to abandon a territory, Hoppe found.

The results will help to inform our conservation measures.


>Hoppe, M. 2018 "Prey availability for a declining sub-population of Bonelli’s Eagles (Aquila fasciata)"



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