Did you know?….
The eagle, once a common species here, was completely wiped out by the early 1900’s.
In a bid to re-establish our natural biodiversity balance, the National Parks and Wildlife Service has over the last 20 years worked on a project to import white tailed sea eagle chicks from Norway to Killarney National Park where they were released and have now dispersed throughout Ireland.
What did this project entail?…….
On June 20th 2006, 20 white-tailed sea eagle chicks arrived on a flight from Trondheim in Norway to Kerry Airport.
Their arrival in the Kingdom was the culmination of years of work on the part of the National Parks and Wildlife Service and organisations like the Golden Eagle Trust and the Irish Raptor Group to bring the white tailed sea eagle back to Ireland after an absence of more than 100 years.
At the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992 Ireland signed up to a biodiversity plan which included the reintroduction of species native to an area that were now extinct.
A lot of research was done to establish if the eagle could be successfully reintroduced to Ireland from Norway without damaging the existing eagle population there.
As a result of years of work the first 20 chicks arrived in Kerry in June of 2006.
If birds of prey are thriving it shows that everything else below them on the food chain is also healthy.
Over the last few years a further 50 chicks have been imported from Norway.
Eamonn Meskell, divisional manager in Killarney National Park, has managed the second phase of the project now run entirely by the National Parks and Wildlife Service.
That we now have native white-tailed sea eagles is a great source of hope for the future.