Photo Credit: Jerry Green
Photo Credit: Carrie Threadgill
SCIENTIFIC NAME: Aquila chrysaetos
OTHER NAMES: King of Birds, Royal Eagle
STATUS: Rare in winter, spring, and fall in all regions. HIGH CONSERVATION CONCERN.
DESCRIPTION: The golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) is one of
DISTRIBUTION: The golden eagle is distributed across the northern hemisphere. They frequent all states of the
HABITAT: Golden eagles inhabit areas near grasslands and open pastures where food is plentiful. During the winter, golden eagles often are associated with forested ridgelines and forage along small forest openings.
FEEDING HABITS: Golden eagles usually catch all the food they eat, rarely feeding on carrion as is common with the bald eagle. They prey on species such as rabbits, squirrels, gophers, prairie dogs, fawns of the deer family, antelope fawns, wild turkeys, reptiles and other smaller birds. Occasionally young domestic livestock are taken as food. In the southeast during the winter, golden eagles often scavenge for carcasses, such as road-kill or shot white-tailed deer and other mammals.
The young begin to fly when 72 to 84 days old but depend upon their parents for another three months. Then the young will either migrate or move out of the parents' territory but overwinter in the area where they were hatched.
The life span of the golden eagle is estimated to be about 30 years.
Davis, James R. Non-game Birds in
AUTHOR: Kevin Holsonback, Wildlife Biologist, Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries