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The Golden Eagles of Ireland

A symbol of the ancient druids returns!
© H20 Alchemist - Flickr CC View Large

Golden Eagles were once revered as a symbol of wisdom and power by the ancient druids in Ireland. But the Golden Eagle’s voice was not heard in Ireland for most of the Twentieth Century. In the spring of 2007, a Golden Eagle pair hatched a chick for the first time since 1912, in Glenveagh National Park, in the far northwest of the Republic of Ireland. As of 2014, three pairs are nesting in the park. The partnership that brought these eagles to Glenveagh includes not only conservation groups but also local sheep farmers and surrounding communities, which hope to bring the tradition of the Golden Eagle back to Ireland.

Full Transcript

Transcript: 

BirdNote®
The Golden Eagles of Ireland
Written by Ellen Blackstone

[Paddy Fahy’s Reel by Martin Hayes]

Golden Eagles were once revered in Ireland by the ancient druids, as a symbol of wisdom and power. And up till recently, you’d have been more likely to see an ancient druid than the bird they so admired.

[Call of a Golden Eagle]

But that’s changing – slowly.

In 2007, Golden Eagles nested successfully in Ireland for the first time in a hundred years. In Glenveagh (pronounced Glen VAY) National Park, in the northwest of Ireland, in County Donegal. (pronounced DUN - ay - GAHL)

[Paddy Fahy’s Reel by Martin Hayes]

Like many birds of prey, adult Golden Eagles establish their territory near their original nest site. [Call of a Golden Eagle, mostly in the background] The first two adults were introduced to Glenveagh Park as chicks, and they fledged in that area. Now there are three nesting pairs, though successful breeding remains tricky.

This year, the first pair failed to hatch a chick because of heavy rains in April. A second pair that contained the first Irish-born bird also failed, possibly because they built their nest in too exposed a location. But a third pair did succeed in hatching a single male chick.

[Call of a Golden Eagle]

Golden Eagles everywhere face the challenges of habitat destruction and persecu-tion by humans. But the alliance that brought these eagles to Glenveagh includes not only conservation groups, but also local sheep farmers and surrounding communities. All hoping to bring the tradition of the Golden Eagle back to Ireland.

Learn more on our website, BirdNote.org.

[Paddy Fahy’s Reel by Martin Hayes]

###

Call of the Golden Eagle provided by The Macaulay Library at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York. Recorded by A.L. Priori.
Irish highland ambient recorded and provided by Martyn Stewart, naturesound.org
“Paddy Fahy’s Reel” performed by Martin Hayes and Dennis Cahill, from the album “The Lonesome Touch” Green Linnet, 2006
BirdNote’s theme music was composed and played by Nancy Rumbel and John Kessler.
Producer: John Kessler
Executive Producer: Dominic Black
© 2014 Tune In to Nature.org   September 2014   Narrator: Mary McCann
ID#092407GOEA2  GOEA-01b

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