An extension to the known wintering range of the Steppe Eagle Aquila nipalensis, in the Poonch and Jhelum Valleys, Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan

Doi: https://doi.org/10.13157/arla.67.2.2020.sc1

Authors: Fathul BARI, Ejaz Ur REHMAN, Muhammad KABIR and Shakeel AHMAD

E-mail: shakeel_icup68@yahoo.com

Published: Volume 67.2, July 2020. Pages 415-422.

Language: English

Keywords: Aquila nipalensis, disturbance, dump site, IUCN, raptor and wintering migrant

Summary:

The endangered Steppe Eagle Aquila nipalensis is a winter migrant to Pakistan but baseline data regarding its current distribution and population status there is sparse. The present study investigated new distributional records from the Poonch and Jhelum valleys of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, beyond the range of the current IUCN distribution map for Pakistan. It adds another 6,730km2 to the known wintering range. Mixed wintering groups of adults and immatures, averaging 154 individuals annually, were counted in two survey years. Site counts averaged ten birds and ranged from 63 at Hajira, a waste dump, to just two, at Kalas. Waste from slaughterhouses and other anthropogenic sources appeared to be the main food source since the largest eagle concentrations were at dump sites. We suggest that the addition of the study area to the wintering range map of the species and recommend annual monitoring of the population.

Supplementary Material:

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