A fresh summer morning with a steel-blue sky opened the day. In front of the steel-blue sky over the Zichow forest in the Randowbruch only 10 km away from the polish border, raptors are circling up in the air. One of them is strikingly different. Red Kites (Milvus milvus) circle around him and – after a while – attack him. Finally it is clear: the highly thought-after immature Imperial Eagle (Aquila heliaca) is found.
After a beautiful but quite cool morning, the birding day had gone so far without the long-awaited sighting of the Imperial Eagle. The day was – now at 10:30 am – although still young already very productive. But the exceptional vagrant had not yet emerged. Bad luck: on Tuesday and Wednesday of the week, the Eagle of the Randowbruch between Zichow and Zehnebeck could not be detected within five hours of up to 4 observers.
Otherwise, it was already a beautiful, productive birding day. Almost no sighting of a regular bird of prey remained unfulfilled. So many Red Kites – especially young birds – ,Black Kites (Milvus migrans), young and adult White-tailed Eagles (Haliaeetus albicilla), Eurasian Marsh-Harriers (Circus aeruginosus), Common Buzzards (Buteo buteo), at least 4 Lesser Spotted Eagle (Clanga pomarina), one or the other Eurasian Kestrel (Falco tinnunculus) and as a nice highlight a deep passing Eurasian Hobby (Falco subbuteo).
Shortly before a sighting of an Aquila-Eagle was still uncertain. Especially the young Red Kites were very active and proved their beginners flying skills. A young white-tailed eagle had been on the mowed lawn for hours on a larger piece of carrion – perhaps a dead hare. The Lesser Spotted Eagle in a variety of feathers stalked on the mown meadow in search of food.
So around 10:30 am there was suddenly activity over the Zichow forest. Especially Red Kites screwed up in the air. One of the birds observed is much larger, heavier and noticeably yellowish on the underside. The tail is kept close – unlike the Red Kites. All the birds circle over the forest. The Red Kites attack the immature Imperial Eagle. But he can escape elegantly up in the sky. There, however, he is taken by a circling White-tailed Eagle in “reception”. Both birds fly close together, circling in ever higher heights, but also get caught and then fly again harmoniously next to each other.
Whether this was actually an approach attempt of the Imperial Eagle or whether both eagles simply found the right thermals, you never know.
The wide meadow area of the Randowbruchs has always something to offer- also on rarities. A Long-legged Buzzard (Buteo rufinus) or a Black-shouldered Kite (Elanus caeruleus) are examples. A Pallid Harrier (Circus macrourus) was recently reported from the Randowbruch as well.
Although the area is in intensive agricultural use and therefore seems somewhat cleared out, it is still a fairly natural lowland landscape. The landscape of the Randowbruch is located north-west of Passow and east of Wendemark only a few kilometers from Schwedt near the river Oder.
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