Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucucephalus)
Valentine – Valentine was brought the zoo, as an adult, on February 14th 2004 by Fish and Wildlife. She had severe cataracts from DDT poisoning and limited vision. Even though she her vision is impaired she will still vocalize when she sees a local bird of prey fly by or perch close to the zoo. We love hearing her amazing calls throughout the zoo.
The bald eagle, with its’ snowy-feathered (not bald) head and white tail, is the proud national bird of the United States.
Eagles are carnivores and mostly eat fish. Bald Eagles will take advantage of carrion (dead and decaying flesh) and will also kill small animals for food.
It’s possible for bald eagles in the wild to live longer than thirty years, but the average lifespan is fifteen to twenty years. A captive eagle at West Stephentown, NY lived to be at least 48 years old.
Females lay two eggs each year.
Bald eagles live along the coast and on major lakes and rivers where they feed mainly on fish. They can be found throughout the United States (except Hawaii) and can be seen year-round flying over Big Bear Lake.
- A Bald Eagles body temperature is about 106 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Bald Eagles do not have vocal chords, they have a syrinx instead.
- The largest bald eagle nest on record was 9.5 ft wide and 20 ft high. It weighed more than two tons.
- A bald eagle has a wing span from 6 to 8 feet.
- Bald eagles are believed to mate for life.