What is a Golden Eagle

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What is a Golden Eagle

Golden eagles are birds of prey belonging to the eagle family and the genus Eagle. The body length is 76-102 cm, the wingspan reaches 2.3 meters, and the weight is 2-6.5 kg. Androgynous. When juvenile, the head and neck are yellowish-brown; the bases of the two wing feathers are decorated with white except for the three outermost ones, and the rest of the body is dark brown; the feathers and tails are off-white, and the tips of the feathers are black; adult individuals have no white wings and tails, and the top of the head and The occipital feathers turn to golden brown. Its tarsus and metatarsus are all covered with feathers.

What does a golden eagle look like

The golden eagle is a large bird of prey. The top of the head is dark brown, the feathers from the back of the head to the back of the neck are long and pointed, the feather base is dark reddish brown, the feather tip is golden yellow, with dark brown feather stem lines. The upper body is dark brown, the shoulders are lighter, and the back and shoulders are slightly dotted with purple luster; the tail coverts are light brown, the tip is nearly dark brown, the tail feathers are gray brown, with irregular dark gray brown horizontal spots and a broad dark brown end spot ; Wing overlying feathers are dark reddish brown, and the feather tips are lighter, light reddish brown. The primary flight feathers are dark brown, the base of the inner primary flight feathers is grayish white, with messy dark brown horizontal spots or stripes; the secondary flight feathers are dark brown, with grayish white markings at the base, and the ear feathers are dark brown. The chin, throat and front neck are dark brown, and the feather base is white; the chest and abdomen are also dark brown, and the feather rachis is lighter. Plumage with red vertical stripes.

Juveniles are roughly similar to adults, but their body color is darker. In the first year, the tail feathers of juveniles are white, with a wide black end spot, and the base of the flight feathers is white, forming white spots under the wings; after the second year, the tail is white and the underwings are white The white spots are gradually reduced, and the undertail coverts also change from brown to reddish brown to dark reddish brown.

The iris is chestnut brown, the tip of the mouth is black, the base is blue-brown or blue-gray (the chick’s beak is lead gray, the beak is yellow), the cere and toes are yellow, and the claws are black.

Golden eagle habitat

Golden eagles live in forests, grasslands, deserts, and river valleys. In winter, they often move in low mountains and hills and plains at the foot of mountains. The highest distribution area reaches an altitude of more than 4,000 meters. During the day, it often stops on the top of rocky cliffs in mountains and tall trees in open areas to observe the surrounding conditions. Hunts in grasslands, shrubs, slopes and hills.

Golden Eagle behavior

The legs of the golden eagle are all covered with feathers, and the feet have three toes facing forward and one toe facing backward. The toes have thick and long horny claws that are as sharp as ligers. The claws on the inner toe and the back toe are more for sharp. When catching prey, its claws can pierce the vital parts of the prey at the same time like a sharp blade, tear the flesh, tear the blood vessels, and even twist the neck of the prey. The huge wings are also one of its powerful weapons, and sometimes it can knock the prey to the ground with a flap of the wings.

They are usually active alone or in pairs, and sometimes form smaller groups in winter, but occasionally large groups of about 20 can be seen. Golden eagles are good at soaring and gliding. They often glide in a straight line or hover in a circle at high altitude, while looking down at the ground to look for prey. The two wings are lifted up slightly in a “V” shape, and the direction of flight is controlled by the subtle adjustment of the wings and tail. altitude, speed and flight attitude. After finding the target, it folds its wings and dives at a very high speed, and at the last moment stretches its wings to slow down. At the same time, it firmly grasps the head of the prey and pokes its sharp claws into the skull of the prey, causing it to die instantly. It preys on dozens of prey, such as geese and ducks, pheasants, roe deer, deer, goats, foxes, marmots, hares, etc., and sometimes it also eats small animals such as mice. When catching larger prey, dismember it on the ground, eat the good meat and internal organs such as heart, liver, lungs, and then divide the rest in half and bring them back to the habitat in batches .

Distribution area of Golden eagle

Golden eagles have a vast distribution range, covering much of the Northern Hemisphere. They are found in North America, Europe, Asia, and northern Africa, and their range extends from the Arctic Circle to subtropical regions.

Within their distribution range, golden eagles occupy a variety of habitats, including mountains, forests, and open plains. They are adaptable birds and are known to thrive in a wide range of environments.

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