Harriet Smith Photography


"For The Love of Africa"

AFRICAN SAFARIS - Trips Of A Lifetime

Engaging In Flight

The Bateleur Eagle has a wingspan of  72 - 84 inches and weighs  4 - 6 lbs. It has a very short tail which makes it unmistakable in flight.  They have a lifespan of 20 - 25 years.  Female Bateleur eagles are larger than males.

When not in flight, they spend most of the  time perched or standing on the ground at the waters’ edge. They spread their wings like solar panels to absorb the sun’s rays. This eagle can hunt over  250 miles in one day. Its top speed during flight rarely exceeds 50 mph.  The short tail allows it to bank and turn with ease.

Mating pairs of eagles enact a dramatic courtship flight. The male often performs 360 degree rolls while the female flies on her back. They pair will bond for life. Both the male and female assist with building the two-foot-wide nest, which is made of strong sticks in a baobab or acacia tree.  A female will lay single egg in a nest that sits in a large tree that offers protection. The male assists with incubation, protection of the nest and feeding the young. In 52-59 days, the baby Bateleur eagle hatches. The fledgling is independent at four months of age but will not attain sexual maturity or adult plumage until age seven. Only 2% of chicks make it to adulthood.

Engaging In Flight
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