Saturday, March 7, 2009

Bald Eagle

An American Bird: Unique to North America, the bald eagle can be found along lakes, rivers, marshes and seacoasts across all 50 states except Hawaii. The bald eagle, so named because of its bald appearance due to a patch of white feathers on top of its head, is the only eagle native to North America.
Built to Kill: Bald eagles, as part of the group known as birds of prey, have acute eyesight, muscular legs and sharp bills. Most birds of prey hunt during the daytime unlike owls. They make their homes along lakes and rivers where fish is plentiful, a dietary staple.
Mates for Life: Bald eagles will pair for life. Bonding between pairs occurs through intricate aerial acrobatics. Together the couple builds massive nests by creating a web of sticks in a tall tree or sometimes a cliff.
From Eaglet to Eagle: A clutch includes two or three white eggs each season. The plumage of newly born eaglets is light gray, but turns dark brown by the time they leave the nest at 12 weeks. Adults are mottled brown with a white crown and white feathers under their wings. By 4 or 5 years of age, a bald eagle's beak and eyes turn yellow. Their wingspan is between 6 and 8 feet.

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