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The eagle has landed

Mount Helena resident and eagle researcher Simon Cherriman was thrilled with his feathered catch. Photograph: JUDY DUNLOP
WEDGE-TAILED eagle researcher Simon Cherriman has successfully completed the most difficult stage of his ground-breaking project at the proposed Lorna Glen conservation reserve in the Murchison.
The Mt Helena resident said he was thrilled to capture an adult eagle and fit it with a solar-powered GPS transmitter.
“The transmitter will track the movements of the eagle for at least 12 months and hopefully much longer, provided it stays attached,” he said.
“And just when we thought things couldn’t get better, we were blessed with good luck when we captured a second eagle, this one being an adult female from a neighbouring territory.
“She too was fitted with a transmitter and now both birds are being tracked remotely via GPS.”
The project to gather data is supported largely by a Department of Environment and Conservation community grant as well as the Australian Geographic Society.
Mr Cherriman said while the initial data collected was just the tip of the iceberg, it boded well for a great future of further records.
“It is incredibly exciting adult wedge-tailed eagles are being tracked by satellite,” he said.
“Never before has anyone been able to look at a map and view the location of our largest bird of prey from a remote location.”
Mr Cherriman said he would produce a documentary on his research, the first of its kind conducted in Australia.
“This event has for me been a dream I have had since before the age of 10,” he said.
“Before I even knew what a transmitter or anything was, I dreamed of having some way to follow eagles and I am absolutely overjoyed at the experience.”

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