Booted Eagle (Hieraaetus pennatus) dark morph: photo Antonio Camacho Lorenzo
The same bird, being harassed by a kestrel. Photo: Antonio Camacho Lorenzo
The first two photographs in the present post were kindly sent to me by Antonio Camacho Lorenzo, who observed this dark morph bird in Los Barros (Los Llanos de Aridane) on Dec 14.
However, the first notification of Booted Eagle received this year came from a visiting birder (John Perry) who saw a pale morph specimen above the Parador in Breña Baja on Oct 24. I made a couple of unsuccessful attempts to find his bird, but it wasn't until Dec 13 that I spotted a pale morph eagle soaring above the Risco de la Concepción viewpoint near Santa Cruz: possibly the bird observed by John Perry? As usual, the migrant raptor was being persistently harassed by kestrels and a small flock of Red-billed Chough.
Returning to the viewpoint today (Dec 15), I had distant views of the same pale morph bird, and managed to get the two pictures below...proof that there are at least two Booted Eagles on the island at the moment.
Booted Eagle (Hieraaetus pennatus), pale morph