King of Eagle

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King of Eagle any of many large, heavy-beaked, big-footed birds of prey belonging to the family Accipitridae (order Accipitriformes). In general, an eagle is any bird of prey more powerful than a buteo. An eagle may resemble a vulture in build and flight characteristics but has a fully feathered (often crested) head and strong feet equipped with great curved talons. A further difference is in foraging habits: eagles subsist mainly on live prey. They are too ponderous for effective aerial pursuit but try to surprise and overwhelm their prey on the ground. Like owls, many decapitate their kills. Because of their strength, eagles have been a symbol of war and imperial power since Babylonian times. Their likeness is found on Greek and Roman ruins, coins, and medals.

Eagles are monogamous. They mate for life and use the same nest each year. They tend to nest in inaccessible places, incubating a small clutch of eggs for six to eight weeks. The young mature slowly, reaching adult plumage in the third or fourth year.

The harpy eagles, named after the foul, malign creatures (part woman and part bird) of Greek mythology, are large, powerful, crested eagles of the tropical forests of South America and the South Pacific. They nest in the tops of the tallest trees and hunt macaws, monkeys, and sloths. The great harpy eagle (Harpia harpyja), which ranges from southern Mexico to Brazil, is about 1 metre (3.3 feet) long and bears a crest of dark feathers on its head. Its body is black above and white below except for a black chest band. It is becoming increasingly rare, particularly in Mexico and Central America. The New Guinea harpy eagle (Harpyopsis novaeguineae) is about 75 cm (30 inches) long. It is gray-brown and has a long tail and a short but full crest. Very similar in appearance and habits is the Philippine eagle (Pithecophaga jefferyi). It is about 90 cm (35 inches) long, brown above and white below, with a crest of long, narrow feathers. It is an endangered species.

The harrier eagles, six species of Circaetus (subfamily Circaetinae, serpent eagles), of Europe, Asia, and Africa, are about 60 cm (24 inches) long and have short unfeathered legs. They nest in the tops of trees and hunt snakes.

The hawk eagles (genera Spizastur, Spizaetus, Lophaetus, and Hieraaetus, subfamily Accipitrinae) are lightly built eagles that have fully feathered legs and large beaks and feet. They hunt all kinds of small animals. Members of the Spizaetus species—e.g., the ornate hawk eagle (Sornatus) of tropical America—have short wide wings, long rounded tails, and ornamented heads. Bonelli’s eagle (Hieraaetus fasciatus), of Mediterranean areas and parts of southern Asia, is about 60 cm (24 inches) long, is dark above and light below, has a broad tailband, and usually shows a white patch on the back.

The sea eagles (sometimes called fish, or fishing, eagles, Haliaeetus species) are very large eagles that live along rivers, big lakes, and tidewater throughout the world except South America. Some reach 1 metre (3.3 feet) long, with a wingspan nearly twice that. All have exceptionally large high-arched beaks and bare lower legs. The undersurfaces of the toes are roughened for grasping slippery prey. These birds eat much carrion but sometimes kill. They snatch fish from the water surface and often rob their chief competitor, the osprey. The largest sea eagle is Steller’s sea eagle (Hpelagicus), of Korea, Japan, and Russia’s Far East (particularly the Kamchatka Peninsula). This bird has a wingspan surpassing 2 metres (6.6 feet) and can weigh up to 9 kg (20 pounds). The only sea eagle of North America is the bald eagle (H. leucocephalus), which is found across Canada and the United States and in northern Mexico. The white-bellied sea eagle (Hleucogaster), frequently seen on the coasts of Australia, ranges from New Guinea and Indonesia through Southeast Asia to India and China. A well-known African species is the African fish eagle (Hvocifer), found along lakes, rivers, and coastlines from south of the Sahara to the Cape of Good Hope.

White-tailed sea eagles (Native to Europe, southwestern Greenland, the Middle East, Russia (including Siberia), and the coastlands of China, had disappeared from the British Isles by 1918 and from most of southern Europe by the 1950s; however, they began to recolonize Scotland by way of Norway in the 1950s and ’60s. By the early 21st century, more than 5,000 breeding pairs could be found across northern Europe as a result of systematic reintroduction programs begun in the 1980s. At present, Scottish populations number more than 150 birds, and a handful of sea eagles have been reintroduced to Ireland.

Asian species include the gray-headed, or greater, fishing eagle (Ichthyophaga ichthyaetus) and the lesser fishing eagle

The serpent eagles, or snake eagles, Spilornis (six species, subfamily Circaetinae), eat mostly snakes, including large poisonous ones. They occur in Asia. Other birds called serpent eagles, notably the long-tailed members of the genera Dryotriorchis (e.g., African serpent eagle) and Eutriorchis (e.g., the endangered Madagascar serpent eagle), occur in Africa.

Verreaux’s eagle (Aquila verreauxii) is an uncommon bird of eastern and southern Africa. It is black with white rump and wing patches. It reaches about 80 cm (31 inches) in length, and it subsists mainly on hyraxes. Seebateleur; golden eagle.

Golden eagle, (Aquila chrysaetos), dark brown eagle of the family Accipitridae, characterized by golden lanceolate nape feathers (hackles), dark eyes, yellow core, gray beak, fully feathered legs, large yellow feet, and great talons. Its wingspread reaches 2.3 metres (almost 8 feet). It is the national bird of Mexico.

See a golden eagle take flight from its nest to swoop down on rabbit prey
See a golden eagle take flight from its nest to swoop down on rabbit prey
A golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) taking flight and capturing a rabbit. See all videos for this article
In North America the golden eagle ranges from central Mexico along the Pacific coast and through the Rocky Mountains as far north as Alaska and Newfoundland. Small numbers range through the Appalachian Mountains as far south as North Carolina. The golden eagle is protected by federal law throughout the United States, but special permits for the shooting of eagles are issued in areas where the birds are believed to kill lambs.

Sea eagle, any of various large fish-eating eagles (especially in the genus Haliaeetus), of which the bald eagle is best known. Sea eagles (sometimes called fish eagles or fishing eagles) live along rivers, big lakes, and tidewaters throughout the world except South America. Some reach 1 metre (3.3 feet) long, with a wingspan nearly twice that. All have exceptionally large high-arched beaks and bare lower legs. The undersurfaces of the toes are roughened for grasping slippery prey. These birds eat much carrion but sometimes kill. They snatch fish from the water surface and often rob their chief competitor, the osprey.

white-bellied sea eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)
white-bellied sea eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)
White-bellied sea eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster) catching a fish.
Behold the congregation of the magnificent Steller’s sea eagle and the white-tailed sea eagle in winters looking for food in Hokkaido, Japan
Behold the congregation of the magnificent Steller’s sea eagle and the white-tailed sea eagle in winters looking for food in Hokkaido, Japan
Learn about Steller’s sea eagle and the white-tailed sea eagle.See all videos for this article
See the red-crowned cranes defending their food from Steller’s sea eagles on Hokkaido island, Japan
See the red-crowned cranes defending their food from Steller’s sea eagles on Hokkaido island, Japan
Steller’s sea eagles battling red-crowned cranes for food on Hokkaido island, Japan.
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Watch a Steller’s sea eagle fight a golden eagle for food on Russia’s Kamchatka peninsula
Watch a Steller’s sea eagle fight a golden eagle for food on Russia’s Kamchatka peninsula
Watch a Steller’s sea eagle and a golden eagle compete for scarce resources in Russia’s frozen Kamchatka Peninsula.
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Watch the Steller’s sea eagles competing for food during the winters on Kuril Lake in Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula
Watch the Steller’s sea eagles competing for food during the winters on Kuril Lake in Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula
Steller’s sea eagles competing for food on Kamchatka Peninsula, Russia.
See all videos for this article
The largest sea eagle is Steller’s sea eagle  of  Korea, Japan, and Russia’s Far East (particularly the Kamchatka Peninsula). This bird has a wingspan surpassing 2 metres (6.6 feet) and can weigh up to 9 kg (20 pounds). The only sea eagle of North America is the bald eagle (H. leucocephalus), which is found across Canada and the United States and in northern Mexico. The white-bellied sea eagle (H. leucogaster), frequently seen on the coasts of Australia, ranges from New Guinea and Indonesia through Southeast Asia to India and China. A well-known African species is the African fish eagle, found along lakes, rivers, and coastlines from south of the Sahara to the Cape of Good Hope.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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