Egg laying took place on 11 and 15 April. Hatching was problematic happening on 29 and 30 May only one day apart. One chick disappeared overnight. Fledged on 15 September and left the area on 13 December.
Kendi (Loved One) was a very curious juvenile. She explored unusual spots, never seen by, or investigated by previous juveniles. She was a fast learner and displayed her flying skills at a young age. She even spent a night sleeping at the office area, where she was observed by the security guard. In December we received notice that the 2008 Roodekrans Juvenile “Makhaza” was badly injured by a Common Duiker Ewe while feeding on the duikers lamb. Vulpro did their utmost trying to revive her to full health, but with no success. It was with a heavy heart that the decision was made to have her euthanized. However 2015 turned out to be yet another successful year for Emoyeni and Thulane raising a strong confident juvenile.
Eggs were laid on 30 April and 4 May. Hatching took place on 13 and 17 June respectively. Fledged on 10 Sept and left the area o 12 December.
Jono – a fitting tribute to Jon Oliver, Africam CEO, who passed away on 8 June 2014, executed remarkable work for the Black Eagle Project Roodekrans’ webcam – who had a challenging period having to deal with two Peregrine falcons that occupied the rocky cliffs within the botanical garden just before the egg hatched. Experiencing some early aggression by his parents, he overcame the ordeal growing up to become a handsome and confident immature eagle.
First clutch failed, and second clutch laid on 14 and 18 August. Only one egg hatched on 28 Sept. Eaglet fledged on 31 Dec, and left the area mid-March.
Nessi (“miracle”), from a second clutch laid late in the breeding season after the failure of the first, had to face the hot and rainy African summer on the cliff face nest. With the odds stacked against Nessi, he has grown up to be a strong, healthy and handsome immature eagle.
Successful breeding season from which Jabulani was raised. Eggs laid 22nd /26th April respectively. Hatched, 5th/9th June respectively. Eaglet fledged 13th September and left territory mid December. Bottom nest.
Successful breeding season from which Mbuso was raised. Two eggs were laid on the 17th and 22nd April respectively, with the first egg hatching on the 31st May and the second on the 4th June. Unfortunately the young chick only survived a matter of hours. Cain went on to become a healthy juvenile and fledged from the nest in September, we suspect it was a male. He eventually left the territory around mid December.
The year of Bafana. A successful year with two eggs being laid on the 9th and 12th April respectively. Only one egg hatched on the 24th May. This year the researcher decided to attach a tag to the juveniles wing as well as a ring to the tarsus, unfortunately the female in trying to remove this tag broke the juveniles leg and it had to be removed from the nest. The juvenile’s leg was pinned and it made a wonderful recovery. It was rehabilitated and released back into the wild.
The eggs were laid on the 15th and 19th April respectively, there was no Cain and Abel this year as Abel was very week on hatching and died the same day. Cain grew quickly and finally left the nest early in September. The adults were able to supply enough prey for the growing juvenile and it grew into a magnificent young eagle finally leaving the nest in November.
This year the female laid two eggs 4 days apart on the 11th April 2008 and 15th April 2008. Both eggs hatched on the 24th May 2008 and 27th May 2008, respectively. After 3 years of only having one egg hatch it was great that this year both hatched. Cain and Abel lasted for 4 days when the younger of the two eventually died. Fledging took place on the 2nd September 2008, with the male dive bombing the juvenile on the nest – this was because of a lack of prey in the area. Unfortunately, the male would not allow the juvenile to stay in the territory and would attack it cruelly when the female would offer it prey. This strange behaviour chased the juvenile out of the immediate natal bowl which in turn denied the young juvenile the opportunity to learn its survival skills from the adults. The last sighting of the juvenile was mid October 2008. Unfortunately, its survival rate will be minimal and will probably have been preyed upon by a black backed jackal or carical.
The clutch was laid on the 11th / 16th April respectively. Only the first hatched on the 26th May, although the second egg was holed the chick did not hatch. Fledging took place on the 2nd September at 98 days. The juvenile had a ring placed on its left tarsus and blood tests reveal that it was a female. On the 15th December the eaglet vacated the breeding territory.
The eggs were laid 11th / 16th April respectively with only the second egg hatching on the 31st May 2006. The first chick died of exhaustion during hatching, as it was probably not strong enough to break out of it. This year the project placed a ring on the right tarsus of the eaglet before fledging, a minuscule drop of blood was taken to confirm the sex of the bird. The juvenile fledged the nest at 99 days on the 7th September 2006. Blood tests confirmed that the juvenile was a male and he left the territory around the 17th December 2006. There have been sightings of the youngster in the Aloe Ridge area.
The cycle was normal with two eggs being laid 19th / 22nd April. The first egg did not hatch and the question arises about the female’s fertility. The second egg hatched on the 3rd June and grew into the most magnificent female eaglet. The juvenile fledged from the nest at 111 days and stayed in the nesting bowl until mid December.
This was the worst year for prey stress and the project had to observe very carefully to make sure the birds had enough prey for them to survive plus feed a young chick. Laying took place on the 30th April and the 7th May with a 7 day laying interval, this could be due to lack of prey or the fact that the females age. The first egg hatched on the 13th June and the second on the 18th June with a hatching interval of 5 days, which is normal. The Cain and Abel scenario lasted for a mammoth 6 days with very little aggression at first, at one stage we thought Abel might just survive and Rooderkrans would have another first. The juvenile fledged after 93 days and left the garden bowl early January 2005.
The eagles only refurbished the bottom nest this year and the question has to be asked – Why? We believe it is because the top nest is visible to the public from the pathway to the geological walk and the disturbance was causing unnecessary stress to the female and chick. The breeding cycle was normal with the clutch being laid on the 19th /23rd April respectively. The eggs hatched on the 2nd /6th June with a four-day Cain and Abel scenario ending on the 6th June. The juvenile fledged after 112 days on the nest; needless to say this was a female bird. She eventually left the territory after spending 63 days in the garden.
Nest building took place on the top nest, but laying was abandoned as a large snake was observed on the rock along side the nest. The birds laid on the bottom nest with no eggcup prepared on the 27th April and four days later on the 01st May. Unfortunately both eggs did not hatch. When the eggs do not hatch many questions are asked – the female’s age – was it due to the female incubating in 10 inches of hail – was it calcium deficiency – was it prey stress or even the stress of the encroaching urbanization – unfortunately we will never know!
The clutch was laid in late April 29th and early May 3rd, with the first egg hatching on the 14th June and the second 17th June. The Cain and Abel struggle lasted for 4 days ending on the 20th June. There was a significant lack of prey and the project supplemented on an “as and when needed” basis. The juvenile fledged from the nest at 103 days and left the gorge on 21stDecember at 122 days.
Another setback – The first egg was expected to hatch on the 11th June, but as the days went by it was obvious that the egg was infertile. The second chick hatched on the 16th June, but sadly died in the early hours of the 18th June, possibly due to parasites. The eagles did start to build on the bottom nest but did not lay another clutch. They spent a lot of time out of the garden, returning some nights to roost.
A normal breeding season on the top nest with the first egg being laid on 22nd May and second 26th May. Hatching took place on the 5th / 8th July respectively with the Cain and Abel struggle lasting 4 days. The young eaglet fledged from the nest at 93 days and finally left the Botanical Garden on the 02nd January 2000.
This was a tragic year as Quatele, the male eagle disappeared from the National Botanical Garden during the last week of March, leaving the female totally devastated and trying to incubate her clutch (first laid 29th March, second 2nd April) entirely on her own. On the 6th April she abandoned her gallant efforts, she was obviously in great distress at losing her mate. Miraculously, she found herself a new mate, who arrived in the breeding gorge on the 25th April and proceeded to have a successful cycle on the top nest. The first egg being laid on the 13th June and the second 16th June. Cain hatched on the 26th July with Abel only two days later on the 28th July, this resulting in a healthy juvenile, which fledged on the 10th November.
A first for Roodekrans. On the 27th April the first of three eggs were laid, the other two 1st /5th May respectively, this subsequently creating a precedent as all three eggs hatched (10th June, 13th June and 19th June) Cain now had to dispose of two siblings, the first died 20th June and the second on the 22nd June. The juvenile fledged from the nest on the 15th September and left the territory exactly three months later on the 15th December.
The first egg was laid on the 25th March and the second four days later on the 29th March, this clutch was laid earlier than usual and unfortunately the second egg did not hatch. Cain hatched on the 11th May and proceeded to develop into a handsome juvenile, when at 72 days to the surprise and dismay of the Black Eagle Project the adults laid again on the bottom nest. (23rd /27th July respectively) Incubation of the clutch was shared normally, but unusual aggression was exhibited by the male towards the juvenile resident on the top nest. As a result, the juvenile was forced to fledge the nest and was chased from the nesting gorge without having had time to establish his eagle instincts and tactics, this ended in disaster and a caracal or jackal eventually killed the juvenile. The second clutch hatched early in September, the usual Cain and Abel scenario set in with Abel succumbing a few day later. Unfortunately, Cain died from exposure to the sun and lack of food while the adults were out desperately hunting.
This was a normal breeding cycle with the eggs being laid on the 10th / 14th May respectively. The first chick hatched on the 22/06/95 with second hatching on the 26/06/95, 4 days later. Unfortunately there is no data as to how long the Cain and Abel scenario lastest. The juvenile fledged the nest at 100days (28/09/95) and left the breeding gorge after intense harassment at the end of November. (Approx 8 weeks in the garden)
Prior to this year only the bottom nest existed and the eagles built a new nest at the top of the cliff beside the waterfall where they laid two eggs on the 7th/11th May respectively. Both chicks hatched late in June, unfortunately both chicks died a few days later. Breeding only in winter, as the chicks are unable to cope with the intense heat of summer, we feel that maybe the inclement weather conditions; with snow flurries and strong winds blowing spray from the waterfall onto the nest could be the reason for their death. However the tenacious eagles started to rebuild the lower nest and laid another clutch at the end of August, the first chick hatching on the 7th October and the second four days later on the 11th October. Cain Fledged in mid January 1995.