The bald eagle is considered the national bird of the United States. Why is it being hunted and killed for its bounty in this very country?
In fact, the bald eagle is the first bird in the world to be considered a national bird – it is considered a national forbidden species of the United States. This bird was officially designated a national bird by the United States Congress in 1782. It was the first country in the world to identify a national bird and followed by many other countries that also declared the bird one after another. symbol of his country.
The bald eagle is a North American bird of prey that is one of the rulers of the North American skies. It is about 71 to 96 centimeters long, has a wingspan of 1.68 meters to 2.44 meters, and weighs between 3 and 6.3 kilograms.
Those who like the bald eagle will surely be impressed by its wonderful appearance with its yellow eyes, beak, and feet; dark brown plumage and white head. This bird has a majestic and majestic appearance.
Unlike other scavengers, bald eagles have a very strong hunting ability, they fly in the air, run on land and can swim in water. Everything in its eyes can become prey of this bird. Records show that a bald eagle tried to grab a large brown bear by the nape of the neck, possibly because the opponent’s fur was too thick to “take action” so they had to give up. . Even the subterranean rulers of North America are seen as prey by them, which shows that they are extremely “big” birds and are considered to represent bravery.
Therefore, the fact that the bald eagle can become the national banquet of the United States seems to be not difficult to speculate. However, things did not go so smoothly, because Benjamin Franklin, one of the founding members of the United States, considered it simply inappropriate to represent the image of the United States.
Franklin believed that the choice of turkey as the national bird was preferable because they were hardy and strong, never surrendered without a fight, and represented the true American spirit. As for the bald eagle, Franklin once said in a letter that it has many bad qualities such as dishonesty and cowardice, even a species that likes to attack other small birds boldly.
But it must be said that, although the bald eagle is brave and good at fighting, the selfishness and cruelty of this bird is undeniable. In a nest of young birds, the strongest will try their best to get food, which can cause siblings to die from malnutrition; When food is scarce, the larger bird will even kill and eat other young birds directly in the nest.
Not only that, bald eagles are also openly hostile to humans. They plunder the fisherman’s catch at sea, and on land kill herders’ lambs, even adult sheep. In 1983, the Wilson Gazette recorded a case in which a bald eagle killed a 60-kilogram pregnant sheep. The most unbelievable thing is that there are reports that this eagle even hunts children.
Either way, in the past, people in the US have developed a hatred for this bird, and some local governments even offer rewards for hunting bald eagles. Along with the widespread use of the pesticide DDT in the last century, the eggshells of birds have become thinner and more fragile, as have habitat reductions, collisions with power lines, and other reasons. Elsewhere, the number of bald eagles has plummeted.
In the 1950s, only 412 of the 48 states of the continental United States remained, of which Alaska killed about 70,000 bald eagles in the first 12 years of the 20th century.
After a successful pairing, the bald eagle couple will choose a tall and sturdy tree, they will frame the tree underneath and outside with branches, and then spread thick weeds and other animal feathers to nest. . When they have free time, they will do nothing but look at their nest. This nesting behavior lasts for the rest of their life (about 20 – 30 years), they will constantly repair and as a result their nests get bigger and heavier – becoming the largest bird’s nest on the planet , with an average diameter of about 2.5 meters to 4 meters.
Especially with the nests weighing up to 1 ton, it is definitely an extremely luxurious residence among birds. The largest bald eagle nest found to date is near the city of St. Pittsburgh, Florida, 2.9m wide, 6.1m deep and weighs more than 2.7 tons, and obviously it has been included in the Guinness Book of World Records.
Of course, not all bald eagle nests are centuries-old and highly durable homes. Due to inappropriate site selection, many nests are often destroyed by storms in less than 5 years, or broken down by branches.