African fish eagles are familar birds of prey on the waterways of sub-Saharan Africa, noted for their distinctive and haunting call. These eagles perch on branches overlooking the water, swooping down to catch fish which are then carried back to the perch or dragged to shore if too big to carry. African fish eagles also eat birds, monkeys and even crocodile hatchlings. These efficient predators can get away with spending as little as 10 minutes a day actively hunting.

The African Fish Eagle has two distinct calls. When near the nest its call is more of a “quock” sound – the female being, in all cases, a little shriller and less mellow than the male. So well known and clear is the call of this bird that it is often known as “the voice of Africa”.  Habitat loss is the Number One threat to breeding eagles today. The same features that attract eagles to any region: clean water, forested areas, abundant food, also attract humans, and competition for habitat is stiff. Competition among eagles is increasing as well:

This picture was taken in a zoo in Algeria Africa, I intentionally cropped out most of the cage to reveal a sense of anger radiating from the eagles gaze. Imagine such a powerful bird of prey being confined..but until we change our ways and rules on deforestation, captivity for some seems to be the only way to ensure a future for such species.


~ by Treasa Giblin on September 20, 2011.

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