Golden eagle (Aquila Chrysaetos) is the most widely distributed eagle which is why it is also the most-studied raptor as well. It is the second heaviest eagle across North America. It is also the world’s second fastest moving animal.
The adult golden eagles are dark brown but they are golden from the back of the crown. The wings from below are gray-colored. Its legs are covered with light golden feathers. The tip of its bill is black but it becomes light-shaded afterwards and yellow from the base. The eaglets (young eagle) are white colored with a black band. During gliding, its wings make slightly V-shaped.
It has a wingspan range of 5 to 7.8 feet and it grows from 66 to 102 centimeters in length. A female golden eagle weighs up to 14 pounds while males weigh around 8.9 pounds. Its bill is 4.5 centimeters long and hind claws can be up to 6 centimeters.
It has a lifespan of up to 32 years.
A female golden eagle lays 2 eggs and she incubates her eggs for 45 days. After about 70 days, the young eagles are able to fledge.
In the Arctic, golden eagles are found along the margins of taiga and tundra.
Golden eagles inhabit unoccupied regions and mountainous areas. They are also found in lowlands. In northwest Europe, they live on mountains like open grasslands, rocky ridges and slopes. In central Europe, they are found in the mountain ranges of Alps, Caucasus and Pyrenees. In North America, they inhabit the Arctic rim like northern Alaska and Canada.
Golden eagles eat a wide variety of small mammals like gamebirds, rodents, rabbits, juvenile foxes and hares.
Normally, they fly around at a speed of up to 32 mph but increases its speed for up to 120 mph during hunting. As it swoops down on its prey, a golden eagle can attain a speed of 150 to 200 mph.
Occasionally though, the natural predators of golden eagles are white-tailed eagles, snow leopards, brown bears and cougar.