Lesser Spotted Eagles gorging on Queleas – part 2
The estimated number of migratory Lesser Spotted Eagles earlier this week at Pongola Game Reserve was in the range of 100 – 120 birds.
Both the above two birds were drying out after a light early morning shower.
The pale eye of the adult (above left) is very noticeable in the early morning sun.
A lightly blotched juv on the left and a plain sub-adult on the right.
Two young birds.
Because the queleas are breeding within the thick clumps of tall reeds, its difficult to witness the eagles tearing open quelea nests and actually feeding on chicks.
Most nests are simply torn open at the top and the noisy soliciting chicks are then extracted from above.
Above: an intact active quelea nest (left) and quelea nestling on the right.One of the migratory Lesser Spotted Eagles about to enter the reed beds.
Above: part of the flock of attendant Lesser Spotted Eagles (approx 50 birds in frame).