Results of the Autopsy of the Dead Golden Eagle

Results of the Autopsy of the Dead Golden Eagle


The bird was found under an electricity-carrying pylon in the area of the Dervent Heights. Despite the obvious cause of death, the Center’s veterinaries made an autopsy of the corpse. During the external inquest we found burnt primary feathers on the left wing and a missing right leg. The autopsy showed a hemorrhage in the abdominal cavity located in the area of the heart. The probable cause of the hemorrhage is torn abdomen aorta situated immediately under the spinal cord. According to experts the aorta was torn when the bird fell from the pylon and was not caused by the high electric voltage – i.e. this feature can not be considered as pathognomonic in future similar cases.

The bird had satisfactory weight and visible hypodermic fat residue showing the good condition of the corpse for the winter-season preparation.

The dead Golden eagle was recorded during the regular assessment of the effects of the electric transmission network on birds and bird mortality in an area harboring breeding Imperial eagle pairs. This activity is carried out by Green Balkans within the framework of a project called “Conservation measures for target species of the EU Birds Directive – Lesser Kestrel, Black Vulture, and Imperial Eagle in their main habitats in Bulgaria“ with the financial support of the European Fund for Regional Development of the EU and of the state budget of the Republic of Bulgaria through Operative program “Environment 2007-2013” (, Third Axis “Conservation and restoration of the biological diversity”, project No. 58301–60-480, contract № 58301 – С – 008 according to procedure BG161PO005/08/3/01/05.

For further information:
Hristina Klisurova – 0886570053,
Veterinarian at the Wildlife Rescue Center, mobile: 0886 570 053,

Gradimir Gradev -
Coordinator Imperial Eagle Conservation Activities