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Bald Eagle

Written by: Posted on: December 31, 1969 at 7:00PMPosted in: Main Topic

The Bald Eagle has a white feathered (not bald) head and white tail and the body and wings being chocolate brown. The Bald Eagle is a common bird species on Kodiak Island. There is a very long history of counting our Bald Eagles on the Refuge. The program started in the 1950’s with boat surveys along the shores of Karluk Lake.  Results from these surveys indicated that the number of active Eagle nests increased from 158 in 1963, peaked at 538 in 2002, and then declined to 398 in 2007. Although the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has recently upgraded the birds from endangered to threatened they remain the most abundant in Alaska and Canada.  

Bald eagles are powerful fliers who can reach speeds up to 100 miles per hour during a dive. Average flight speeds are about 20 to 40 mph. They can soar for hours on end. The Bald Eagles can also swim, using their wings to get themselves through the water. Since their main diet is fish this skill is very useful. 

Bald Eagles primarily eat fish, carrion, smaller birds and rodents. Eagles are also known to prey on large birds and fish. They use their talon to fish. Mating season for the bald eagles are from late September to early April, depending on the region. The female lays her first egg 5 to 10 days after mating. The eggs are then incubated for about 35 days.

Other facts:



Life Span

Up to 28 years


Body 34-43 inches Wingspan 6 to 8 ft.


6.5 to 14 lbs.


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