Haweswater’s golden eagle

The RSPB reserve at Haweswater offered the chance to see until his probable death in 2015 or 16 the only remaining golden eagle in England, whose partner partner disappeared in 2004. The golden eagle was exterminated in England and Wales by 1850, but managed to cling on in small numbers in Scotland, where it has now recovered to 440 pairs. The Haweswater pair, hatched in Scotland, began to breed here in 1969, but human pressures have prevented, and are likely to prevent for the foreseeable future, the establishment of this magnificent bird south of the border. Incidentally, the last place where white-tailed eagles are known to have bred in England is Eskdale on the western side of the Lakes in the 1790s, when the pair were killed. The Haweswater reserve is still a good spot to see another rare mountain bird, the ring ouzel between April and July.