White-tailed eagles, also known as sea eagles, have reached record numbers in Iceland this year, at least since the late 19th century, mbl.is reports. Eagle pairs numbered 76 in the country this summer, two higher than last year. There were 36 chicks born in 28 nests, and 51 pairs in total attempted to breed this summer. More nests produced two chicks this year than last, when nearly all nests only produced one chick.
The areas where breeding is generally successful tend to be the same each year. White-tailed eagles mate for life and are known to reuse the same nests, often for generations.
Kristinn Haukur Skarphéðinsson, head of zoology at the Icelandic Institute of Natural History, says these are the highest recorded numbers since records began to be kept, adding there are fairly good records going back roughly 100 years.