The golden eagle has been voted Scotland's favourite wild animal in a new survey.
The bird of prey, often found in open upland around Perthshire and central Scotland, beat off competition from the red deer, red squirrel, seal and otter.
According to STV, 4,773 of almost 12,500 votes in the poll were for the golden eagle and it secured 40 per cent of the vote.
Speaking to The Courier, Environment Minister Paul Wheelhouse said: "While we can be enormously proud of all our native wildlife, it is fitting that the magnificent golden eagle has topped this poll of Scotland's Big 5 species.
"At present, Scotland is home to all of the UK's breeding pairs of golden eagles and the species has done well to recover after almost being wiped out in the last two centuries.
"However, recent incidents have shown that the golden eagle is still threatened by illegal persecution in some areas.
"We have a responsibility to protect this wonderful bird so that future generations can continue to enjoy its presence in our skies."
The survey was to promote Scotland's wildlife in the year of Natural Scotland.
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