Credit: Mike Crutch

A wildlife foundation hoping to reintroduce the White-tailed Eagle to the Isle of Wight wants to know what you think of its plans.

The largest UK bird of prey was once widespread along the whole of the South Coast, before being driven to extinction, with the last pair breading on Culver Cliff on the Isle of Wight in 1780.

Now, the Forestry Commision and Roy Dennis Wildlife Foundation say the Island’s closeness to rich foraging areas makes it a good area for the project, which could see small numbers released at a confidential site over a five year period.

Credit: Mike Crutch

Roy Dennis, one of the world’s leading experts on White-tailed Eagle re-introductions, said:

“We believe that the Isle of Wight is highly suitable for White-tailed Eagles. It is the last known breeding site of the species in southern England, the Solent and surrounding estuaries will provide a rich food supply, there are numerous potential nesting sites in woods and cliffs, and also good loafing areas for young birds.”

Restoring a population on the Island will not only help worldwide conservation efforts but could also give a significant boost to the Isle of Wight economy, according to the Foundation.

Recent reports have shown White-tailed Eagles generate up to £5 million to the economy of the Isle of Mull each year, and £2.4 million to the Isle of Skye.

Roy added:

We are keen to consult the local community, landowners and other stakeholders on the Island to encourage support and involvement in the project, and to identify and resolve any concerns.”

Public drop-in sessions will be held at three locations across the Island.

You can go along on:

Monday 12th November, from 6-8pm at YMCA Winchester House in Shanklin.

Tuesday 13th November, from 11am-1pm at 5th Ryde Scout Group Hall in Ryde Ryde. Or, from  6-8pm at Cowes Yacht Haven.