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Leg Rings as life saver for Eagles!

Some weeks ago locals reported an "Eagle from Germany" in a fishing Village in Guinea-Bissau. When we made the visit to this native village we found a European Fish Eagle (Osprey - Pandion haliaetus) with a rope on one leg, in worst condition but alive. The children were using this live bird as a toy. The fisherman told us, the bird he captured himself in a fishing net. However, we found out, there was two leg-rings on this eagle from the "Vogelwarte Hiddensee" in Germany. The osprey in Guinea-Bissau is a protected bird and so we asked the fisherman to give us the bird but they refused. So our Wildlife Officer was forced to confiscate this eagle officially.

Later we found out, the Eagle got his rings on 26-06-03 in the German Province Brandenburg. Without this leg-rings we would not have got the information and this eagle would be already dead now. In the meantime the bird is eating well, it is a female and now about 1800 Grams. It will be released within the next few days and then it has to fly again back to Germany, about 6000 Kilometre to breed there and next year to come back to Guinea-Bissau.

Many Ospreys from Germany travelling to Guinea-Bissau. Few times we get Rings from such birds, but unfortunately mostly dead or illegally hunted.


River Zoo Farm • P.O. Box 890 Bissau • Rep. Guinea-Bissau • Satellite Phone: 00870-76162-7460 • Satellite Fax: 00870-76162-7461 • river_zoofarm@gmx.de

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