Thursday, January 24, 2013

Golden Eagle


Golden Eagle | Golden eagle is one of the best known birds of prey in the northern hemisphere. Like all eagles, it belongs to the family Accipitridae. Golden eagles more widely distributed than any other eagle. Unlike North America, Golden eagles can be found in Europe, North Africa and Asia. The highest density of nesting Golden Eagles in the world located in southern Alameda County, California. These birds are dark brown, with lighter golden-brown feathers on their head and neck. Golden eagle is a solitary bird, which can be found in remote areas. They do not congregate in large numbers in winter. 


Scientific classification
Kingdom:     Animalia
Phylum:     Chordata
Class:     Aves
Order:     Accipitriformes
Family:     Accipitridae
Genus:     Aquila
Species:     A. chrysaetos

Golden eagle is truly an impressive bird with a wingspan of about two meters. Golden eagle is identified by its brown color with a variable gold wash over the back of her head and neck, beak, that is horn colored, and a light striped tail. The brown heads and tails of adult Golden eagles are easily confused with those of young bald eagles, and can be distinguished by the yellow colored bill of the bald eagle. The patterns of the Golden eagle seem more clear than the spotted blochy color of young bald eagles. Eagles in flight may be confused with members of the vulture family, but where vultures soar with their wings in a slight V-shape, eagles fly with their wings flat and straight, or only very slightly lifted. 


Golden eagles are larger than bald eagles in the mean length and wingspan, but there is not much difference in average weight. One way to distinguish a golden eagle from an immature bald eagle is leg plumage. A Golden eagle legs are fully feathered, under an immature bald eagle's legs are bare. As seen in flight, young Golden eagles have white spots at the base of the primaries, the tail is white with a distinct dark terminal band. It takes four years to acquire adult plumage. Adult Golden eagles are brown with tawny on the back of the head and neck, tail ringed vague. Some Golden eagles live in their nesting territory all year. Others may migrate due to lack of food in winter. They do not migrate long distances, because of their excellent hunting skills. 


Golden eagle is one of the most powerful predators within the avian world. While they show a strong local preferences for certain prey, Golden eagles in the first place opportunists and almost all small to medium sized animal may be preceded, if found. Nearly 200 species of mammals and birds are listed as Golden eagle prey. Prey selection is largely determined by the local availability and size of the prey. Nesting on cliffs or in trees, Golden eagles inhabit mountainous or hilly terrain, and hunt over open country for small mammals, snakes, birds and carion. Some other animals, birds and mammals too small to be important for the huge bird of prey, often use the nest as shelter. Their enemies are just the right size for Golden eagle prey, and therefore avoid active eyries. 


Golden Eagles usually mate for life. They build several eyries within their territory and alternately used for several years. These nests consist of heavy branches, covered with grass during use. Golden Eagles degree in about four years old, and often associated with the same partner for life. They prefer to nest on the cliffs or cutting rocks, although they occasionally nest in a tree, often return to the same nest each year. Females lay a clutch of one to three eggs once a year. Most men do not share in the 41 to 45 days of egg incubation, but bring food to the female. Both parents share the responsibility of raising the young. The Eaglets weighs only three ounces when they are born. The young Eaglets remain in the nest for nine to eleven weeks before they fledge. 


Golden eagles are used in falconry since the Middle Ages. In Asia they were used in teams to these animals as deer, antelope and wolves to hunt, while its use was reserved for emperors in Europe. They can be trained for falconry. At one point, the Golden eagle lived in temperate Europe, North Asia, North America, North Africa and Japan. In most areas this bird is now a mountain-dweller, but in earlier centuries also bred in the plains and forests. In recent years begun to breed in lowland areas, eg, in Sweden and Denmark. There was a large decline in Central Europe, where they are now essentially limited to the Apennines, the Alps and the Carpathians. In Britain, the last complete overview of the Golden eagles took place in 2003, and found 442 occupied territories. 


Golden eagle is the most common domestic animal in the world, with five countries, Albania, Germany, Austria, Mexico and Kazakhstan, making it the national animal. It is also a common motif in the national symbols of countries that have not officially made the national animal and national bird. The reasons are several, but among the heathen, that the Golden eagle uses as or in a state symbol, there are two distinct traditions that help explain the modern use. The eagle is a sacred bird in some cultures and the feathers of the eagle are central to many religious and spiritual practices, especially in a number of Indians in the United States and First Nations in Canada, but also many of the peoples of Mesoamerica. Some Indian peoples revere eagles as sacred and the springs and other parts of Bald and Golden eagles. Feathers are often worn on Native American headdresses and compared with the Bible and cross in Christianity. Eagle feathers are often used in various Native ceremonies and are used to honor noteworthy achievements and qualities such as exceptional leadership and courage.

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