First sea eagle chick for Orkney in nearly 150 years First sea eagle chick for Orkney in nearly 150 years

First sea eagle chick for Orkney in nearly 150 years

Hoy’s resident pair of sea eagles have successfully hatched a chick, the first in Orkney for nearly 150 years.


We recently blogged about searching for Orkney’s sea eagles – well, your chances of finding them have just increased considerably!


RSPB Scotland has just announced that Hoy’s resident pair of sea eagles (also known as white-tailed eagles) have successfully hatched a chick, the first in Orkney for nearly 150 years.

In fact, local RSPB staff think there could be two chicks in the eyrie, high up in the crags above the Dwarfie Stane in Hoy.

The sea eagle pair in the sky above the island of Hoy


The appearance of at least one chick is fantastic news, given sea eagles only returned to the islands in 2013. Nesting attempts in 2015 and 2016 failed, and it’s thought that 2018 is the first year and nesting attempt together for this current pair, with the female from previous years pairing up with a new male.

The eagles will continue to be monitored closely as the breeding attempt is still in the early stages, with young chicks sometimes staying in the nest for up to 14 weeks. Success rates for first-time parents vary, so everyone is keeping their fingers crossed.

RSPB Orkney's 'Eaglewatch' base in Hoy


The RSPB Scotland Hoy Nature Reserve already features hen harriers, great skuas, red-throated divers and much more, so the possibility of adding Orkney-born sea eagles to the list is already creating great excitement.

Staff will be manning their ‘Eaglewatch’ every day over the summer at the Dwarfie Stane car-park so visitors can catch a glimpse of the eagles. Just turn up at the car-park between 11am and 3pm daily to find out more and get some expert advice on the eagles and other natural attractions in the area.

The Digital Orkney project has been part financed by the Scottish Government and the European Community Orkney LEADER 2014-2020 Programme.