Eastern imperial eagle (Aquila heliaca)

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The eastern imperial eagle (Aquila heliaca) is a large species of bird of prey that breeds from southeastern Europe to western and central Asia. Most populations are migratory and winter in northeastern Africa and southern and eastern Asia.  However, the two are now regarded as separate species due to significant differences in morphology, ecology and molecular characteristics.

Females are about a quarter larger than males.It closely resembles the Spanish imperial eagle, but has far less white to the “shoulder” and it is slightly larger.

Habitat and breeding

In Europe, the eastern imperial eagle is threatened with extinction. It has nearly vanished from many areas of its former range, e.g. Hungary and Austria.

The eastern imperial eagle feeds mainly on hares, hamsters and pheasants as well as a variety of other birds and mammals.

In the Danube Delta only in migration.

photo: Mihai BACIU


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