Complex inventory on habitat requirements and quality

Action foresees in more detail the searching for unknown nest-sites (because only known nest sites can be protected) and analysing the previous conservation regime and its efficiency to the spotted eagles and black stork nest sites conservation. The most important part of the action is to estimate the efficiency of conservation measures and to elaborate optimal measures for conservation of the spotted eagles and black stork habitats.

Sociological study

The main perceived constraints regarding the nature conservation issues are related to the proper information availability; training, co-ordination and management on conservation issues concerning endangered species protection; environmental education for students and teachers; relevant NGOs institutional capacity; overall environmental awareness in society. To get information about the current situation a sociological study will be carried out by independent body. The goal of sociological study is to get information about attitude and readiness of people to face the restrictions what are connected to protection of eagles and black stork, and at the same time the study gives information and helps to prepare the actions targeted to public awareness rising activities

Development of guidelines for elaboration of additional criteria’s for conservation obligations

Current activity foresees the development of guidelines for elaboration of additional criteria’s for conservation obligations (extra pages for conservation obligations). To achieve the objective of the activity it is necessary to carry out analyses about the extent of protection zone, impact of clearcuts, maintanance possibilities of foraging habitats, inclusion the nest sites into existing nature reserves, establishment of new reserves for protection of certain species, protection arrangement of potential nest sites, creation possibilities for nesting and feeding in economical and private forests (the use of sustainable forest management near the protection zones). The final management suggestions for the landowner should be completed by an expert and by the local county environmental departments (following the developed guidelines).

Updating and reviewing the management plans

For greater spotted eagle new management plan (for years 2005-2009) will be composed during the project implementation. For lesser spotted eagle and black stork the management plans will be critically reviewed and relevant suggestions will be made for further amendment of the plans.

Studying foraging success and the effect of foraging biotope management

The importance of the availability and quality of different biotopes to the occupancy of spotted eagles and black stork nest sites and to its productivity has been remained unexplored. Moreover, before including the grassland management widely to the conservation practice, the management effects should be known. Under this activity appropriate criterias for the assessment of the foraging areas quality and usage by eagles and black stork will be elaborated. In detail, as a result of the activity it is possible further on to estimate the need for maintaining the relevant foraging habitats, which are used by the species. It is important to know the influence of different agricultural activities (land use) for the species foraging success. Also the further optimal conservation measures should take into consideration more broader scope beside the legal protection of nest sites.

Purchase of lands

To maintain favourite status of nestsite of spotted eagle and black stork, the best solution is to purchase these most critical nest sites (where human attitude is negative and with high probability the nest site is threatened by economical activities or interest) from those private landowners to the state in order to guarantee the optimal conservation of the sites.The lands within the most critical areas, where the impact of human activities is negative and protection of the species habitat/nest sites is not possible only with determining the protection zones and sending conservation obligations, will be purchased.

Public awareness and dissemination of results

An important part of the project is to deal with landowners’ problems and to inform the public about the need for environmental protection. The achievement of the project goals depends on public inclusion – information and public awareness rising about black stork and eagles, about identification of different nests, about protection of nest sites, maintenance of foraging areas and about threats and risks relevant to the species.Therefore, there are several different action for raising public awareness in project:

  • Video-clip about eagles and black stork in Estonia
  • Booklets “Eagles and Black Stork”
  • Extra pages for landowners whose lands are occupied by eagle nests
  • Regional seminars and learning days
  • Web updating, creating version of English and Russian language
  • Introduction of eagles and black stork in media (radio, TV, papers)
  • Composing a layman´s report.




Other documents

Eagles of Estonia
Landowners´ attitude to the restrictions related to the bird protection 2009
Attitude of estonian population to the restrictions related to the bird protection 2008
Eagles and Black Stork in Estonia

Here documents in Estonian

Main results of EAGLELIFE project

The EAGLELIFE project was prolonged for one year due to unsuitable weather conditions on the flood plains; also, several problems and delays occured in reaching the milestones.
Although project was finished by the 31st of May 2009, some restoration work continued until September (costs were covered in that case by national funding). In general, all goals were achieved and, in most cases, results exceeded expectations (e.g., purchased land area, work with land owners, finding of new nests of target species, repeated sociological studies, etc.). The favourable conservation status of target species was achieved, partly through the implementation of previously-adopted national conservation action plans for the target species..

Results of the project are as follows:

  • In total, 2,854 hectares of flood plains were restored in Natura 2000 sites as foraging areas of target species (of spotted eagles, mainly)
  • Conservation Action Plans were updated during the EAGLELIFE project for all target species
  • 76.8 hectares of old forest around black stork nest sites were aquired to ensure the high conservation status of nest sites. All this area belongs to Natura 2000 network.
  • Over 200 new nest sites of target species were found and relevant micro-reserves established on over 6,000 hectares – only known nests could be protected. A study concerning micro-reserve size and other conditions was conducted, and the results were used for composing conservation rules for protected areas.
  • High-quality materials were produced and disseminated among target groups (a DVD „The ABCs of Estonian Eagles“; the booklet „Eagles and Black Storks in Estonia“; a brochure and web-publication concerning guidelines for the elaboration of additional criteria for conservation obligations; several leaflets for land owners informing about the success of specific bird pairs on their landplot or about foraging areas of spotted eagles; posters, information boards, etc.)
  • In total, 84 regional seminars involving over 3,550 participants were conducted during the EAGLELIFE project.
  • Web cameras on Black Stork- and Lesser Spotted Eagles nests were installed, and over 8.3 million observers watched the streaming video.
  • A sociological study was conducted twice – first to understand the needs of raising awareness and then to monitor project results. Also, the study was useful in providing guidelines for post-EAGLELIFE activities in awareness raising.
  • During five years, the EAGLELIFE project and actions concerning its target species were introduced nearly 300 times in a variety of media.
  • Significant international co-operation was established in the field of eagles and Black Stork conservation, and is continuing within the Eagle Club of Estonia. We are able to advise colleagues in other countries in several aspects of species conservation, including the use of satellite transmitters use and installation of webcams.

The Estonian Ornithological Society and the project manager acknowledge the partners– especially the Environmental Board and Eagle Club for their perfect partnership within the EAGLELIFE project. Also, we thank the external team and desk officers of EC LIFE Unit for their remarkable help!

After-LIFE conservation plan

The continuation and/or development of actions initiated by the EAGLELIFE project has been quite seriously discussed with project partners and the results are as follows:

  • Action Plan implementation will be organized by the Environmental Board at the state level and by the Eagle Club at the NGO level. Cooperation between both will most likely be fruitful.
  • Composing new Action Plans will be a task for the Eagle Cub or the Estonian Ornithological Society, but work orders will be issued by the Environmental Board.
  • Land acquisitions of restricted land plots will remain a function of the Ministry of Environment as parent organization to the Land Board, who is keeping the “order list.”
  • Restored area maintenance will be a task for the Environmental Board, both in the long-term and short-term perspectives. If only the organization will not be reorganized again…
  • Species site protection sites (micro-reserves) will be the duty of the Ministry of Environment, but in the long term this may be transferred to the Environmental Board. In all cases, there are no visible signs of losing protection sites in the Nature Conservation Law. Preparation work for amendments or new rules will be made by the Eagle Club.
  • The main source for the implementation of Action Plans is the Environmental Investments Center, but in the future it could be partly given over to the budget of the Environmental Board. Also, EU- or other funds could be used, especially for international projects.