Interesting Facts About the Bald Eagle
On the 20-th of June, 1782, the bald eagle was agreed to be the National Emblem of the United States of America. This bird was selected due to its distinct features and powerful wings. These traits are believed to be the synonym of the American nation’s might. American Eagle Day was proclaimed in 1995 by President Bill Clinton and Tennessee Governor Don Sundquist. Now it is celebrated on June 20 every year in 47 states.
American Eagle Day hasn’t become the federal holiday in the United States yet, it is up to you whether to celebrate it or not. Continue reading to learn interesting facts about the main hero of this celebration – the bald eagle!
Quick Facts about Bald Eagles
- Bald eagles are actually not bald. Before the word ‘bald’ started to mean ‘hairless,’ it used to mean ‘white.’ For this reason, this type of eagles was called like that. Haliaeetus leucocephalus, translated as “white-headed sea eagle” is a Latin name of this species. these birsd have a brown body, yellow legs and feet, and a hooked bill, as well as a white tail and head.
- A bald eagle is unique to North America. This species is considered to be unique to this continent. In North America, they can be encountered in multiple locations from Alaska to the north of Mexico.
- Bald eagles are predators. Most often, bald eagles eat fish. Their diet also includes rodents and smaller birds. They either hunt for their meals by themselves, or sometimes steal food from other birds.
- Female eagles are larger. The length of bald eagles’ bodies is about 3 feet. Males are usually smaller than females. The wingspan can be as large as 6 feet for males and 7 feet for females. When their wings are outstretched, bald eagles become about 6-feet tall.
- Bald eagles are monogamous. The mating season usually begins in late September and ends in early April. The periods may change from region to region. Once bald eagles find their mate, they live and do everything together. They build their nest on tops of trees using sticks. The nests of these birds are proven to be the biggest among other species of birds. The pair of eagles lives together until one of them dies. Afterwards, the bird that survived usually finds a new mate.
- A bald eagle has a success story in wildlife. In the 1700s approximately 500,000 bald eagles used to be in North America. However, as a result of habitat loss, hunting and deaths caused by the DDT (a pesticide), the population became as small as 500 pairs. Due to the ban on the use of DDT, it was possible to replenish the population to over 70,000. Bald eagles have been excluded from the list of the endangered species, and now they are regarded threatened. Still, much work has to be done to protect the birds from hunting and habitat loss.
Now when you know all these facts, share them with your family and friends on American Eagle Day!