What Do Eagles Eat? – Diet and Feeding Habits:

Every bird has a diet plan. Some find it on the ground; some suck the nectar from flowers, some eat insects, while others prey on other small birds. 

When you see an eagle soaring high in the sky, roaming about a single spot, you wonder what it is looking at. 

What do eagles eat that they can find from such a great height? How do they prey? How do they find their food? 

Different Types Of Eagles, Different Types Of Diet:

Several species of eagles reside in different parts of the globe. They are found everywhere except Antarctica. 

They are large birds that have eyesight greater than many beds and especially humans. They hunt on other small animals, and with their crooked beak and sharp talons, search for a variety of food as per their diet. 

Eagles can be called very patient birds. They gauge, they wait, and then attack. They are always searching for vulnerable prey and out in the open. 

Some eagles mainly eat fish, while others hunt small sparrows, hummingbirds, crows, pigeons, rabbits, etc. For a large eagle, even a puppy is a nice lunch.

Different Types Of Eagle Foods:

Here is a list of what eagles eat  

  • Fish
  • Small birds like sparrows, hummingbirds, pigeons, etc.
  • Rodents like rats and squirrels.
  • Small animals like rabbits and puppies
  • Water Birds like flamingos
  • Small cattles like sheep
  • Reptiles like lizards, snakes,    
  • Foxes
  • Marmots
  • Lemur
  • Carrion
  • Crabs
  • Coles

How Much Can An Eagle Eat In One Go?

Eagles don’t have scheduled lunch and dinner plans. Instead, they are opportunistic feeders and eat when the food is available. 

Usually, they can eat 1//2-1 pound of food in one go. Also, they can hold upto 2 pounds in their crop. 

Their stomach is very small-sized, but their crop is quite big and allows them to hold food equivalent to 1/3 of their body weight in the crop, to survive when food is not available.

What Do Bald Eagles Eat?

Bald Eagles are the ones you see in most of the pictures. A bright yellow beak, yellow eyes, and white head standing in contrast with their brown body. They are also called sea eagles. 

They are mainly found in North America, Canada, Mexico and are coming back to life. They were endangered once, but their protection has resulted in the restoration of their species.

They live near water bodies and eat almost anything they get. Their primary food sources are fishes, salmon, catfish, crabs, reptiles, rabbits, or other small animals.  

What Do Golden Eagles Eat?

Golden Eagles are named such due to the golden hue on their head and neck while their body is entirely light brown. They are found in abundance in the Northern Hemisphere. 

These are larger birds and are 1.5 times the size of a bald eagle. They are not seen in entire North America but are notably the most commonly found eagle. 

Due to their large size, they eat several animals, birds, and fishes, including small prairie dogs, insects, lizards, arctic fox, carrion, marmots, jackrabbits, squirrels, birds, deer, mice, voles, etc. 

So, golden eagles have got a lot of variety of food on their plate.  

What Do Philippine Eagles Eat?

Philippine Eagles look like they have forgotten to comb their hair. 

They have gray faces, white bodies,and white and brown feathers. They are large birds of prey and are often found in steep terrain. 

Their primary diet includes snakes, birds, Philippines Flying lemur, monitor lizards, etc. 

They are known as monkey-eating eagles, and they indeed feed on monkeys, but they also eat several other animals and birds, including bats, flying squirrels, macaques, etc. 

Related Read: Which birds eat mealworms? | How do birds find worms?

What Do African Fish Eagles Eat?

These fish-eating eagles are native to Africa. You can see it flying in areas with a water source and abundant food or fish. It is also a large eagle that looks a lot like a bald-headed eagle. 

Since it is found in many African countries and in a vast region, it is known by different names. As its name suggests, it mostly eats fish.

Catfish and lungfishes are their favorites, and they mostly like them fresh out of the water, but they can also eat dead fishes. 

Also, if they find flamingoes or other birds, they happily eat them.

What Do Steppe Eagles Eat?

Steppe Eagles, as their name suggests, mostly live in steppes. They are also large eagles who have a gray beak, brown eyes, and mixed color feathers.

It is found mostly in China, Russia, Mongolia, and nearby places. They feed on many things, including insects, voles, carrion, reptiles like snakes and lizards, squirrels, and other small birds. 

What Do Long-Crested Eagles Eat?

The name says it all. The bird is easily identifiable due to its long crest that rests on its head. They have a slightly flat head, long legs, and rusty red and brown mixed feathers.

It is a large African bird that resides mostly in wetlands, forests, savannah, grasslands, etc. It is also known as farmers’ friend as it mostly feeds on the rodents like vlie rats. In addition, it eats frogs, insects, etc.   

In short, every eagle has a different diet. It depends on their habitat and food availability. 

Do Eagles Eat Daily?

Every living being needs food daily, but when there is no food available, these birds are bound to stay hungry. However, their crop comes to their aid where they can store upto 2 pounds of food.

How Do Eagles Hunt?

Eagles have special claws for catching their prey. They fly high to survey a large area for food. 

When they spot it, they fly towards it with their fast speed. Their claws are made for such a purpose, with two toes facing forward and backward-facing talons while two facing backward with forward-facing talons. 

They are very sharp and help them to grip the prey tightly. If they are hunting a fish in the water, they pick it up from the water and fly towards a safe place, where they can enjoy their meal. 

The same goes for a small animal, reptile, or bird. If they are adamant about having a bird, they can chase it for quite a while. Small sparrows, pigeons, parrots, and crows often fall prey to them.  

Do They Eat Bones Too?

Ys, they eat the bones of the fish or birds too, but their stomach acid dissolves it. Bones carry important nutrients. 

Are Eagles Endangered?

Yes, some of the eagle species are endangered, and they are on the list of protected animals. 

Can I Keep Eagles As Pets?

No. Only registered falconers and rehabilitators can keep them. Since they are wild birds, it is illegal to keep, sell, or eat them. Therefore, they are protected, and you cannot keep them as pets. 

What Can I Feed Eagles?

It depends on what kind of eagle it is/ If you find an eagle or a young member and want to feed it, you can give it fish, or give it the eagle food that is easily available in the market. 

But, as you cannot keep them, and if the situation arises, contact the wildlife authorities in your area if the bird is injured or sick.  

Related Read: What Do You Give A Sick Bird? How Do You Revive Its Health?

Do Eagles Make Good Pets?

In some countries, people keep eagles as pets. They can be tamed and make great pets. But not all of them are friendly. 

Conclusion

Here is everything you need to know about eagles’ diet. 

They are an important part of our ecosystem and play a very important part in the food chain by eating several small animals, birds, and insects and keeping their population under control. 

But they are not choosy when it comes to food. They will eat almost everything, even if it is dead.

Intro Video - Backtobirds x
Intro Video - Backtobirds