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Bald eagle

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Bald eagle
BaldEagleMain.jpg
Scientific Classification
Binomial Name

Haliaeetus leucocephalus

Subspecies
EpicEagle.jpg
A Bald eagle surveying the land

The Bald Eagle is a species of eagle known by the scientific name Haliaeetus leucocephalus. They are majestic creatures that can grow to 37 inches in length and 90 inches in wing span. They are perhaps best known as the national bird of The United States of America. The Bald Eagle's name come from its head, which, contrary to popular belief, is made up of feathers. The Bald Eagle can be found all through out North America.

Body Design

A Bald Eagle flying with its massive wings.

With a length of 31.1 to 37.01 inches and a wingspan of 70.08 to 90.16 inches, the Bald Eagle is a large bird. They weigh an average of 9.47 pounds making them heavy. [2] The male is brown with a white head, while the female, usually twenty-five percent larger than the male, is all brown. [3] All Bald eagles have yellow eyes and a beak.[2]

Life Cycle

Bald eagle chicks in a nest.

For the first twenty weeks of its life, the bald eagle will live with its parents. When it is four, it gains sexual maturity and returns to its birthplace to breed.[4] Then it will mate and begin the cycle all over again. The average lifespan of a bald eagle is twenty years.[5]

Ecology

A map showing where the bald eagle lives.

The Bald eagle lives in all climates. This includes most of the U.S. and Canada, parts of Mexico and some islands in the Caribbean. They make huge nests on high tree branches. They are birds of prey and mostly eat fish. In the winter, they usually migrate to their breeding grounds in warmer climates such as the Caribbean and Mexico.[5]

Bald Eagles in American Culture

The Great Seal of the United States

The bald eagle is most famous for being both the national bird and the national animal of the United States of America. It can be found on our great seal. When it was chosen to represent us in 1782 not everyone agreed. Benjamin Franklin thought that our national bird should have been the wild turkey. In 1884 he wrote "I wish the Bald Eagle had not been chosen the Representative of our Country. He does not get his living honestly...Besides he is a rank Coward: The little King Bird not bigger than a Sparrow attacks him boldly and drives him out of the District.”[6] Since then, the Bald eagle can be recognized worldwide as an American symbol.

Video

Two videos about Bald eagles.

References

  1. Haliaeetus leucocephalus Wikispecies. Web. Last update on December 13 2013. Author Unknown
  2. 2.0 2.1 Martina, Leila. Haliaeetus leucocephalus Animal diversity web. Web. Accessed on January 4, 2015.
  3. Johnson, Sibylle. American Bald Eagles Beauty of Birds. Web. Accessed on January 6, 2015.
  4. Bald Eagle NatureWorks. Web. Accessed on January twenty-fifth, 2015. Author Unknown
  5. 5.0 5.1 Bald Eagle The All Reliable Wikipedia. Web. Last updated on January fifth, 2015.Author Unknown.
  6. Bald Eagle All About Birds. Web. Accessed on January 6, 2015. Author Unknown