Birds – The American Bald Eagle

The American Bald Eagle

 The  American eagle was unofficially chosen as a National Symbol in 1872, when the Constitution of the us was ratified. it had been not officially nominated intrinsically until 1788. There was a heated argument, led by the good statesman Franklin , about this bird becoming the National Bird. Mr. Franklin wanted the turkey which he thought better symbolized the clean, honest, and more straightforward ideals of the American people. His bid was lost, however, in 1789 when Washington became the primary President of the USA, and therefore the American eagle was officially adopted because the “First Bird”.

The American eagle is that the only eagle which is native to North America and it’s only on its native continent that one may find it. Alaska, the 49th State admitted to the Union, is home to about 35,000 of the 70,000 total population. British Columbia boasts about 20,000, and therefore the rest predominantly inhabit the Pacific coastline, with a couple of scattered throughout the remainder of the us .

Population is heaviest within the Pacific Northwest due, in part, to the massive amount of salmon found there. Eagles depend greatly on fish as a main a part of their diets. they’re going to eat small animals like mice, rabbits, muskrats, duck and snakes and that they will resort to eating carrion (dead animals), if necessary. However, they like that their food be of a fresh source and that they are a fan of fish.

While American eagle are capable of carrying their food on the wing , they will actually only lift about half their weight . Although they will dive, catch fish within the water, and swim to shore with them, they need also been known to drown if the fish is just too big and that they don’t abandoning of it.

The linear unit , for both males and females, ranges between 29 and 42 inches (73.66 to 106.68 centimeters). The male is habitually between 7 and 9 pounds (.497 to .639 stone) and features a wingspan which may exceed 6 feet (1.83 meters). the feminine is larger and may weigh up to 14 pounds (.99 stone). she will have a wingspan of up to eight feet (2.44 meters).

In level flight, the American eagle has been recorded at accelerates to 44 miles per hour (70.1 kmp). It can dive (and has been clocked) at speeds of 75 to 100 mph (120.68 to 160.39 kmp). The eagle is capable of riding the thermal air currents in more than 10000 feet (3048 meters) and may stay aloft doing this for hours at a time.

This species of bird mates for all times , and can only seek another mate if their “spouse” dies. They build an “eyrie (also spelled aerie)” during which they incubate their eggs and lift their eaglets until those leave the nest at 12 weekS.

An eyrie, or nest, are often inherent the tops of giant trees (quite often aspens) or on a ledge of a mountain. The eagles habitually increase their nests until they reach up to 10 feet (2.54 meters) in diameter. The eyries are lined with soft materials like leaves, feathers, and moss to supply an appropriate area for incubating the eggs once the feminine lays them.

The eggs are usually laid at the top of April, following a desirable “courtship dance” in early April, which the eagles perform in midair. They dive and climb, and appearance to be attacking (locking talons, or claws with) one another during this flight sequence.

After the eggs are laid, the male and therefore the female alternate in hunting, incubating the eggs (34 to 35 days, usually hatching in late May or early June), monitoring the nest, and brooding/feeding the eaglets until they’re large enough to fly and leave the nest. this happens when the eaglets are about 12 weeks old. They develop special flight feathers, which make them look larger than their parents, that function extra balance (sort of like training wheels on a bicycle) while they learn to fly.

Hatchlings are light grey when born, and switch dark brown before leaving the nest. Young adults have brown and white mottled feathers beneath their wings until they reach 5 years aged .

At 5 years, the top and tail feathers turn white. The mature bird isn’t actually bald. “Bald”, at just one occasion , meant “white”. Thus the name, “bald eagle”. Between the fourth and fifth years, the beak and eyes combat the distinctive yellow color. to ascertain a mature American eagle up close is awe-inspiring. to ascertain one on the wing is an experience to cherish for a lifetime.

Preservation Efforts

In spite of the “National Symbols Act” and therefore the “Bald and Gold Eagle Preservation Act,” which were both passed in 1940, the American eagle population declined rapidly because farmers killed them for fear of the harm that they might do to their livestock. Hunters and poachers killed them as trophies and for profit, and lots of were killed accidentally. This seriously alarmed preservationists.

Consequently the American American eagle was officially declared an “Endangered Species” in 1947, under a law which preceded the “Endangered Species Act” of 1973. Until 1995, they were listed as endangered in 43 of the 48 contiguous us . Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Oregon, and Washington State listed them as “threatened”. In 1995, the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) upgraded their status to threatened within the other 43 states.

In February of 2006 an announcement was made that the USFWS had issued guidelines on how the species should be protected by landowners et al. , once the bird is not any longer listed as a threatened species. Those guidelines include proposals for laws which prohibit disrupting the bird’s breeding, sheltering, or feeding practices or disturbing it in any manner which could cause injury, death, or nest abandonment. Should those proposals be solidified and approved, it could lead on to the removal of the American eagle from the “threatened” list.

It should be noted that albeit the new guidelines are approved, the American American eagle remains protected under the “Migratory Bird Treaty Act”, the “Bald and Gold Eagle Preservation Act”, and therefore the “National Symbols Act”. it’s illegal to possess, take, barter, trade, sell, transport, import, or export eagles. And it’s illegal to gather eagles or their body parts, nests, or eggs without a special permit. Possession of a feather, or other body parts, may be a felony which may carry a fine up to $10,000 USD and/or imprisonment and this is often very strictly enforced. Though, federally known Native Americans are still permitted to possess those emblems which are traditional to their culture.

One can learn more about these magnificent, beautiful, and majestic birds and the way to assist with the continuing preservation efforts by visiting the various websites dedicated to them.

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