Bald Eagle Facts
- Firstly, the incredibly majestic Bald Eagle, Haliaeetus leucocephalus, is technically classified as a sea eagle. This magnificent species also represents the only such native to its habitat range.
- In addition, two known subspecies of this stunning bird exist. But, despite the famous name, the animal is not actually bald. This occurs because the name derives from an older term which meant white-headed.
- Finally, the amazing avian holds the distinction of building the largest nest of any bird in its range. Further, in fact, these are the largest arboreal nests of any known animal. These may be as much as 13 ft (4 m) deep, 8.2 ft (2.5 m) wide, and weigh up to 2,000 lb (907 kg).
Bald Eagle Physical Description
Most notably, like many avian species, the Bald Eagle displays sexual dimorphism. In its case, however, it is a matter of size. The females average about 25% larger than the males. Furthermore, these weigh as much as 14 lb (6.3 kg). Exceptional females may even attain a wingspan of 7.5 ft (2.3 m).
Also, the plumage presents as a distinctive combination of dark brown on the body, and white on the head and tail. The eyes, beak, and feet show a bright yellow in color. The talons also develop large and razor-sharp, as with most raptors.
In addition, the Bald Eagle possesses the ability to retract its talons at will, but rarely chooses to do so.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Aves
- Order: Accipitriformes
- Family: Accipitridae
- Genus: Haliaetus
- Species: H. leucocephalus
Bald Eagle Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
The range of the Bald eagle thankfully remains extensive. It inhabits most of North America, from northern Mexico, all of the continental United States (as well as temperate portions of Alaska), and most of Canada.
Rather fortunately, the creature has proven to be highly adaptable to a variety of habitat types. Due to this, it can live in bayous, deciduous forests, and even the Sonoran Desert.
Furthermore, the Bald Eagle generally prefers to build its large nests in the tops of the tallest trees near a body of water.
This majestic species was once nearly extinct. However, conservation efforts have, for once, seen a large resurgence in its number in the past few decades. Because of this, the IUCN now lists it as a species of Least Concern.
Finally, this breathtaking bird can live up to 20 years in the wild.
Species Sharing Its Range