Golden Eagle

Topics: Eagle, Bald Eagle, Bird Pages: 3 (490 words) Published: December 14, 2010
David Ratliffe


Mrs. Wolfe

4th Biology

The golden eagle

The Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) is one of the best known birds of prey in the Northern Hemisphere. Like all eagles, it belongs to the family Accipitridae. Once widespread across the Holarctic, it has disappeared from many of the more heavily Populated areas. Despite being locally extinct or uncommon, the species is still fairly ubiquitous, being present in Eurasia, North America and parts of Africa.

These birds are dark brown, with lighter golden-brown plumage on their heads and necks. It has a wingspan averaging over (7 ft) and up to (3 ft) in body length. They are extremely swift, and can dive upon their quarry at speeds of more than 150 miles per hour


Golden eagle predominant prey is (hares and rabbits) and (ground squirrels, Prairie


&Marmots), the two groups normally comprising 50-94% of the diet of nesting eagles.

Additional mammals regularly taken include mice, Martens, Foxes, and young deer's.

The secondary important prey groups for eagles are other birds. Various gallinaceous


(LargelyPhasianidae, Ptarmigan, and Grouse) are the most significant avian prey.

However, virtually any bird, from a Jay to a Swan, is potential prey. During winter

months when prey is scarce, Golden Eagles scavenge on carrion to supplement their diet.

Sometimes when no carrion is available golden eagles will hunt down large prey, such as

goat-antelope andcaribou. Reports have been made of mature adults killing wolves

and other medium sized canine species. There is one confirmed report of a

Golden Eagle snatching the cub of a brown bear, and several other unverified attacks.

Golden eagles are avian apex predators, meaning a healthy adult is not preyed upon.

There are records of golden eagles killing and eating large raptors such asEurasian Eagle...
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