Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Short-toed Eagle(s) at Prawle!

According to Birdguides, a Short-toed Eagle was reported flying north over Prawle Point on sunday, at 11.30. Don't know how I missed that one - perhaps it's time to give up! Or maybe that Stonechat has submitted a report after all!

Further to Dave Norman's post, some (albeit irrelevant) details on Prawle's 'other' Short-toed Eagle. It was seen on 6th October 1982, by myself, John Nicholls and Keith Robins, as well as the late Lawrence Price. It passed west over Horseley Cove, as we watched from below Prawle woods. I saw it first, and called something along the lines of 'what the **** is this!?!' Lawrence, who had seen the species abroad, immediately called 'Short-toed Eagle'. I hadn't even seen Osprey at that time, but knew it wasn't that, and when we finally got to see a fieldguide, it became obvious Lawrence was right. The sighting lasted less than a minute, but I can still see it clearly in my mind to this day. If digital cameras had been so available back then as they are today ..... well, if only!
The record was submitted to the BBRC but was rejected on a vote of 3 for, and 7 against, largely due to the brevity of the sighting of what would have been a first for Britain.

Bitter? Not me - it's on my list!!