What is a Harpy Eagle?

What is a Harpy Eagle?

Harpy Eagles (Harpia Harpyja) is known as one of the largest and most powerful raptors in the Americas. 1 It can be distinguished by its large, strong and hooked bill, particularly robust tarsi and toes, rounded wings, relatively long banded tail and large, round body. Their plumage gradually darkens with age as younger harpy eagles display a lighter grey colour. Females are significantly larger than males in size; males are usually around 400-480g where females can grow up to 760-900g. Harpy Eagles are usually around 86.5-107cm with a large wingspan of 183-224cm.1

Life of a Harpy Eagle:

Once the Harpy Eagle finds a mate, they will mate for life and will usually raise 1 eaglet every 2 years.1 Female Harpy Eagles usually lay 2 eggs in a large stick nest with dimensions 1.9m deep and 1.5m across.These nests, made by both parents, are usually used more than once. Although 2 eggs are laid, there are only reports of raising a single young, what happens to the other hatchling is uncertain. Incubation begins right after the second egg is laid and it lasts 56 days. The females do the majority of the incubation, as well as the feeding of the hatchlings. Fledging occurs four and a half months to six months after hatching. For the first 12 months the juvenile are dependant for their parents for food therefore stay within 100m of their nest.1

Baby Harpy Eagle Chick-www.zooborns.com

Baby Harpy Eaglet -www.zooborns.com

Where are the Harpy Eagles?

The Harpy Eagles are only found in the Americas, more specifically Mexico, Central America into South America with the highest populations in Brazil. The Harpy Eagles are very rare and is considered “near threatened” due to habitat loss and direct persecution. They primarily live in forests, more specifically in tropical lowland forests.

Harpy Eagle Distribution Map

Harpy Eagle Distribution Map- eol.org


How are Harpy Eagles Classified?

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Aves

Order: Accipitriformes

Family: Accipitridae


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