The meadow eagle is our large, imposing eagle, the largest eagle in Europe. It can weigh over 6 kg and has a wingspan of well over 2 metres. The old birds are relatively easy to recognise from their large yellow beaks, white wedge-shaped tails and large broad wings.
It nests near wetlands. They find their habitat near shorelines, rivers, lakes and ponds.
In the period before the great river controls, it was a common breeder throughout Europe, including much of our country. Its decline in Hungary, which began in the late 1800s, reached its lowest point in the 1970s. At that time, only 10-12 pairs were known to nest in the southern Transdanubian region.
Today, thanks to comprehensive conservation measures, the population has increased (more than 300 pairs).
It reappeared in the early 2000s, nesting in the Bodrogzug area. The quality of the habitat is indicated by the fact that 5 pairs are currently nesting in the area. In terms of nesting pairs, this is one of the areas with the highest density in Hungary.
Early nesters may start to overwinter their nests as early as December and in many cases they are already laying eggs in February. Hatching in late March or early April, the chicks are constantly guarded by the parents, mostly the egg-laying mother, due to adverse weather conditions and predators. At this time, as in the clutching period, the old birds' flushing from the nest can be fatal for the chicks. To ensure a calm and successful breeding, it is necessary to limit activities (e.g. farming, tourism, etc.) in the vicinity of the nest.
Anyone can see/admire these magnificent birds during a water trip to Bodrogzug, knowing that by accepting/respecting any restrictions, they have contributed greatly to their successful breeding.