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BALD EAGLE

BALD EAGLEHaliaeetus leucocephalus

Conservation Status: Threatened

Lead Poisoning, wind turbines, electrocution, chemical pollutants, poaching, predators, habitat destruction

CLASS

Aves

ORDER

Falconiformes

FAMILY

Accipitridae

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General Characteristics:

Color: 

Head & tail white (in adults); dark brownish gray body; beak, feet and eyes are bright yellow

Size:

6-7 feet wingspan, 33-43 inches in length

Weight:

9-13 lbs.

Average Lifespan: 

30 years

Captive Lifespan:

up to 48 years

Distribution:

Most of North America

Habitat:

Most often seen near water including, coasts, rivers, and lakes

Reproduction:

Mating: 

March-April

Gestation/Incubation:

30-46 days

Litter/Clutch Size:

1-3

Mature: 

4-5 years

Diet:

Mostly fish, birds, and mammals

Behavior:

A diurnal, generally solitary hunter, that is commonly found near open waters.  Most northern birds move south once water starts freezing.  Many Florida based birds move north for the summer.

Teaching Facts:

1. Builds an enormous nest, which is added to annually over many years.  It is built with dead fall collected from the ground or snapped off trees in flight.  Pine needles are often used for a lining.

2. Once Endangered due to the use of the pesticide DDT. After DDT was banned the Eagles made a comeback.