Dead golden eagle found in Strathbraan: Police Scotland appeals for information

Police Scotland has issued an appeal for information / witness appeal this evening, as follows:

An investigation is under way after a Golden Eagle was found dead in the Glen Quaich area of Perthshire on Monday, 25 April. Officers attended and removed the eagle. A post mortem examination will be carried out in due course. Anyone with info call 101, inc 0835 of 28 April‘.

They haven’t revealed any further details.

The sharp-eyed amongst you will know that the ‘Glen Quaich area of Perthshire’ is dominated by driven grouse moors, often referred to on this blog as Strathbraan, and has been identified in a Government-commissioned report as being a hotspot for raptor persecution, particularly golden eagles, of which at least seven have ‘disappeared’ in recent years, including one whose tag was found a few years later, wrapped in lead sheeting and dumped in the river (here).

[A view of a grouse moor in Strathbraan. Photo by Ruth Tingay]

And then there was the suspicious disappearance of a white-tailed eagle (here), an illegally-trapped hen harrier called Rannoch (here), the suspicious disappearance of a hen harrier called Heather (here), the illegally shot peregrine (here), the long-eared owl held illegally in a trap (here), the ~100 corvids found dumped in a loch (here), the failed raven cull demanded by Strathbraan gamekeepers but thinly-disguised as something else (here) and most recently the General Licence restriction imposed on a Strathbraan estate for wildlife crimes (here).

So although Police Scotland hasn’t released any further details so the cause of the eagle’s death isn’t yet public, the fact that (a) they’re investigating, (b) they’ve issued an appeal, and (c) this is an area with a deserved reputation for its high density of raptor-killing criminals, what do you think the chances are that the post mortem (which surely has been completed by now?) will show this eagle has been illegally killed?

UPDATE 25th June 2022: Scottish Gamekeepers Association takes hypocrisy to the next level (here)

6 thoughts on “Dead golden eagle found in Strathbraan: Police Scotland appeals for information”

  1. It appears to me that IF this bird has been illegally killed in that location then those responsible at a management/owenership level must be the reincarnations of those Tom Johnstone wrote about in his book, “Our Scots Noble Families” in 1909. (Reprints available)

  2. …..sounds to me like this estate is seriously getting a bad reputation for raptor persecution!!
    Hopefully before long……this estate will have the entire ‘prosecution’ book thrown at it🙏🙏

  3. Strathbraan is the atea where senior individuals in Naturescot were in cahoots with the owners of the estates. That is when many of us realised thst they were copying the playbook of Natural England. Why? Why on earth? And the Scottish government is no better. Why? Why on earth? They should represent the people, not only the landowners, many of whom are organised criminals. Organised crime requires the cooperation of those in power, and it appears that they have it.

  4. I am more shocked that the sun sets each day than I am of news of another raptor death in Strathbraan.

  5. Whilst we must await the results of the post mortem, it is perhaps relevant to quote the following from the Scottish Natural Heritage report analysing the fate of satellite tracked Golden Eagles in Scotland-

    “Undoubtedly the highest priority of all is the need to address the illegal persecution that
    continues to affect eagle populations in the eastern and southern parts of the species’ range.
    There can be no more urgent task than to eliminate this blight on the population of one of our
    most majestic birds.”
    Dr Jeff Watson

    The fact that Police Scotland have released a witness appeal suggests there must at least be some suspicion that the death of this is eagle hasn’t been caused by entirely natural causes.

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