I’m joining in the Blogging Through the Alphabet series with Through the Calm and Through the Storm as well as Adventures with Jude. I have decided to have animals as my weekly theme.
Today we will learn about the Eagle.
Photo courtesy of my son!
Check out his other work: Jesse Petty Photography
Eagles are most commonly found in the Northern Hemisphere including Europe, Asia and North America. Eagles are also found on the African continent.
There are more than 60 different species of eagle in the world with only 2 of these eagle species being found in the USA and Canada. One of these eagle species is one of the most common species of eagle, the bald eagle. Despite it’s name the bald eagle has a full head of feathers but their bright white colour makes the bald eagle very distinguishable. The golden eagle is the only other species of eagle found on the American continent.
Eagles primarily eat fish, carrion, smaller birds and rodents. Eagles are also known to prey on large birds and large fish.
Eagles have a wingspread up to 7-1/2 ft and have beaks nearly as long as their heads. The wing span of an eagle tends to be at least double the length of the eagle’s body.
Weight varies depending on latitude and gender. Generally, males weigh approximately 25% less than females from the same area. The average weight of a female bald eagle is 10-14 pounds.
They are solitary birds, said to mate for life.
The nest, or aerie, of twigs and sticks is built at a vantage point high in a tree or on a cliff in a permanent feeding territory and is added to year after year, the refuse of the previous nests decomposing beneath the new additions. Nests can become enormous, measuring up to ten feet across and weighing well over 1,000 pounds.
The mother eagle tends to lay two eggs, which hatch after about a month. In many eagle species one of the eagle chicks is naturally slightly stronger than the other chick, with the stronger chick generally killing it’s weaker sibling. The eaglets do not develop adult markings until their third year, when they leave parental protection and seek their own mates and territories.
Eagles use both monocular and binocular vision, meaning they can use they eyes independently or together depending on what they are looking at and has two focal points (called “fovea” [singular] or “foveae” [plural]) one of which looks forward and the other to the side at about a 45 degree angle. These two foveae allow eagles to see straight ahead and to the side simultaneously. The fovea at 45 degrees is used to view things at long distances. An eagle can see something the size of a rabbit running at three miles away.
The American bald eagle became the national emblem of the United States by act of Congress in 1782.
In the wild, 70-80% of eagles die before they reach adulthood at five years of age. An eagle that makes it to adulthood might live 20-25 years. In captivity, eagles are known to live much longer, 40+ and up to 50 years
Interesting side note: The spot on which an eagle landed dictated to the ancient Aztecs the place where they were to build a city.
Well, I hope you enjoyed learning about these amazing animals as much as I did! Come back next week when we cover the letter F and discuss the Falcon (personally I am curious of the difference between an eagle and a falcon).
Now go check out all the other posts of those who are joining in with Blogging Through the Alphabet. They can post this entire week so make sure to check back and see what has been added!
Enjoy the journey!