A Stellar’s sea eagle called Nikita has gone missing in the Yorkshire Dales in England.
The female bird, which is one of the world’s largest bird of prey species with a wingspan of 2.4 metres (8ft), went missing from her home at the Hawk Experience in Settle on Saturday. Her trainer, Chris O’Donnel, said that while she could have travelled a vast distance in the interim, he believes she’s only likely to be a few miles away.
“It’s a very tame bird,” he said. “You could walk up to her and almost pet her if you wanted to. It will be sitting in a field wishing it was back home.”
Mr O’Donnel said that they fly birds every day, and don’t get too concerned if one goes missing for a short period of time. They can often track birds with radio transmitters, but a bird the size of Nikita can pull a transmitter off in seconds, he said.
North Yorkshire police are advising people to keep their pets indoors until the massive eagle has been relocated.
While Nikita could easily make the trip from Yorkshire to Ireland, it’s highly unlikely she’ll be making it onto anyone’s Birdwatch Ireland Garden Bird Survey list. But don’t forget to look up every now and then! You really never know what you might see….