Description: Mature bald eagles generally have brown bodies with a white head and tail. Their beaks, eyes, and feet are yellow. They grow to be 40 inches (1 meter). Immature Bald Eagles are all brown with showings of white on their wing tips and tail. They may not reach full adult maturity until they are 7 years of age.
Eating Habits: Bald Eagles like to prey on small animals like birds, snakes, rodents and fish. They have very sharp eyesight and hunt while soaring very high in the air, or just a high perch. Once they spot a bird or other prey they will swoop down at a high speed and kill the prey with their powerful talons. Often they will steal the prey of other birds such as ospreys. After the kill is made they will use their talons and beak to rip the prey apart.
Habitat:It is a sea eagle that commonly appears inland, near rivers and lakes. Eagles nest up high on a rocky ledge or in a tree. This is to keep the babies safe from predators. They do this because the baby eagles remain helpless for a long period of time. A pair of eagles will return to their nest, also called aerie, year after year. Each year adding twigs and grass to the nest. The largest nest recorded was 20 feet (6.1 M) deep and 9.8 feet (3 m) wide.
Reproduction:Female eagles will lay 1-3 brownish, speckled eggs. The female will generally feed the babies and incubate the eggs, some males will help with the later of the two. The babies are covered in down and will remain in the nest for up to 100 days. They will not gain adult coloration until they are nearly 7 years old.
General: The Bald Eagle has been the United States national bird since 1782. In 1940, under the National Emblem Act it was protected in all states except Alaska. They were not protected in Alaska because the eagles would often perch on fish traps which scared away salmon. More than 100,000 Bald Eagles were killed by bounty hunters before fishers started fitting the traps with devices to discourage perching. Now the law applies to all 50 states.