A pair of Black Eagles or Verreaux Eagles*  have been nesting Black Eagle in Silvermine Nature Reserve TMNP by C Merryand breeding on the cliffs above Chapman’s Peak Drive, Noordhoek Peak for a number of years.  Walkers and visitors to the Silvermine Area of  Table Mountain National Park are often rewarded by sightings of these magnificent eagles.  Read Corinne’s account below and for more info contact researcher Lucia Rodrigues.

 ” My husband (Charles Merry) and I were walking with our dog on the ridge above the tented camp (above the cyclist’s parking area) on a Saturday morning between 8 and 9am.  We came back the same way and saw that while we were walking an eagle had landed on a large dead tree not far from our path.  It very obligingly remained there while I took many pictures – first into the sun  and then I walked on to photograph back towards it so that the sun was behind me.  When I decided I had enough pictures it flew off towards Constantiaberg, where we saw another black eagle circling, obviously its partner.”

Photo and text above by Corinne Merry which was first posted in the April 2012 FOSNA Newsletter

TMNP have built a bird hide opposite the Black Eagle nest on the cliffs below Noordhoek Peak.  the breeding pair of black eagles have a 9 week old chick ()8 September 2012. For more info about the hide and chick go to:  http://scenicsouth.co.za//2012/09/black-eagle-bird-hide-in-tmnp-provides-view-of-chick-inca/

The Black Eagles on Noordhoek Peak have been breeding there since 2004.

Thus far they have managed to raise a chick every single year and seem intent to do so again this year.  When I visited the nest cliff recently I watched both eagles carrying sticks onto the nest. If they do go ahead and breed again this year eggs will be laid in May or thereabouts.  Residents who are interested in following their progress can do so by following Lucia Rodrigues blog:   I welcome any information on Black Eagle sightings, both on and off the peninsula.

Lucia Rodrigues

Western Cape Black Eagle Project  Birds of Prey Programme, EWT

Homebrew a Cape Town based film company produced a beautiful 1min film of the Black Eagles of Noordhoek Peak .  Watch it at  http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=10151419149280080&saved

 

* Editors comment:  Sorry, but I just can’t resist commenting on the renaming of our birdlife.   I feel that the `new international’ names represent an assault on our cultural heritage.  To me a Black Eagle or Wit Kruis Arend will never be a verreaux eagle anymore than a Dikkop would ever want to be a thick knee.  Or perhaps in the case of Dikkop – being called a thick knee may be preferable… KimK