Thursday, 12 December 2013

144. Eastern Imperial Eagle (Aquila heliaca)

The Eastern Imperial Eagle is most similar to the Golden Eagle, but with a shorter tail which it often holds folded in flight (as seen in the photo) and more evenly broad wings. The adult is very dark brown, with small white shoulder patches and a pale nape. The juvenile is a paler sandy colour with dark brown streaking and dark flight and tail feathers with white tip; when it is in plumage intermediate between juvenile and adult it can be quite mottled as the dark feathers start to grow. Eastern Imperial Eagles are found in parts of Eastern Europe and the the Middle East, being resident in some areas and migratory in others. Their preferred habitat is steppe or open plains with some trees or patches of woodland, and sometimes forests. However they have also been pushed to higher altitudes due to persecution and habitat loss.

Eastern Imperial Eagle, ©Sergey Pisarevskiy, via Flickr Creative Commons.
Eastern Imperial Eagle painting.
Another attempt at a bird in flight, and I don't think this one's too bad actually, although I've not got it dark enough on the flight feathers, and I think the head's a bit on the large side.

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