RSPB launch on-line petition to gain support for naming the golden eagle as Scotland’s national bird.

CLUNY-EAGLE-HEAD-SHOTThe golden eagle has been recently voted as Scotland’s favourite animal, the RSPB are now hoping that Scottish Ministers will formally nominate the species as a national symbol promoting their commitment to protecting the golden eagle from the on-going persecution which many believe is increasing throughout the Highlands.

The petition is fronted by leading wildlife cameraman Gordon Buchanan, which the RSPB plans to submit to Scottish Ministers.

An RSPB spokeswoman explained: “The petition urges ministers to formally designate the species as a national symbol, placing it alongside the lion rampant, Saltire and Scottish thistle as emblems of the country.”

She continued: “There are currently just 431 pairs of golden eagles in the whole of Scotland. Owing to centuries of persecution, this most charismatic of birds has been almost entirely confined to the more remote areas of the country, such as the mountains and glens of the west coast and on the western isles, with numbers held at artificially low levels and many territories vacant. Its restricted range and tendency to favour the more remote and dramatic areas has made it become a coveted sight for any visitor who appreciates Scotland’s magnificent wildlife spectacles.

“But now RSPB Scotland is pressing for the adoption of the golden eagle as Scotland’s national bird, helping to raise its profile, turn around its fortunes and see it return once again to its former range thus increasing the chances of a sighting for visitors and local people.”

Mr Buchanan said: “The thrill of seeing a golden eagle soaring over a Scottish hillside is an unbeatable experience. For me they symbolise the wildest parts of Scotland and there is no other contender for Scotland’s national bird. Spending my childhood on Mull meant I grew up with eagles.

“I’ve been lucky enough to see hundreds since and each one is special. But golden eagles could and should be more common. Scots and visitors to Scotland shouldn’t hope that an eagle sighting is a once-in-a-lifetime experience; they should expect to see them regularly. That is why I’m backing the RSPB’s campaign to make Scotland’s national bird, the golden eagle.”

Stuart Housden, Head of RSPB Scotland said:

It is a stirring symbol of strength and pride, qualities well befitting to a modern Scotland and its people. 2013 is the Year of Natural Scotland – a period where the Scottish Government is celebrating our most impressive natural heritage. What better legacy can we provide for this initiative than to officially designate the eagle as Scotland’s national bird and join together for its future conservation? It would formally recognise the place this species has unofficially occupied in our culture for many centuries, and show our commitment and desire to protect and conserve it, and our wider national heritage, for generations to come.”

Raptor Politics would urge everyone to take the time to add their name to this important petition –  Your support just may provide that extra protection this species really needs now. The closing date for signing is 6th December 2013. Please sign here.

3 comments to RSPB launch on-line petition to gain support for naming the golden eagle as Scotland’s national bird.

  • Falcoscot

    According to SNH, Scottish Government want to increase forestry in Scotland from 17% to 25% by the second half of the 21st century so that’s not going to do much for Golden Eagle conservation, is it !! More green concrete to destroy wildlife habitat.

    Editor’s Comment. This information on top of the wilful destruction by large numbers of Scottish estates of white hares (a food prey item for golden eagles),the loss of habitats because of wind farm proliferation which again drives away prey such as red grouse, the future for golden eagles in Scotland is looking very bleak indeed in the 21st century

  • I am excited by this proposal.I wish ministers would introduce stiffer penalties for the continued persecution of this wonderful and magnificent species.This could also encourage good conservation measures to encourage the bird to become more successfully on producing offspring.Good biodiversity practices and land management are all essential for giving nature and wildlife a home.Hen Harrier National Bird for England?

  • Falcoscot

    OR maybe the Dodo ?