We’ve been seeing a beautiful juvenile White-bellied Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster) recently. We think it’s a new addtion – we’ve identified a new nest but are yet to see it actually enter or exit, so we will keep looking! Since it takes about 4 years before a juvenile becomes an adult with beautiful white breast and darker wings, we’ve got a bit time up our sleeves.
This bird is Australia’s 2nd largest raptor (behind the Wedge-tailed Eagle) – as described on the Birds in Backyards website:
The adult White-bellied Sea-Eagle has white on the head, rump and underparts and dark grey on the back and wings. In flight the black flight feathers on the wings are easily seen when the bird is viewed from below.
The large, hooked bill is grey with a darker tip, and the eye is dark brown. The legs and feet are cream-white, with long black talons (claws). The sexes are similar. As in other raptors (birds of prey), Males (2.5 kg – 3.7 kg) are slightly smaller than females (2.8 kg – 4.2 kg).The wingspan is about 1.8 m – 2 m.
Young Sea-Eagles are brown as juveniles than slowly become to resemble adults in a patchwork manner, acquiring the complete adult plumage by their fourth year.
We are located 10 minutes south of Eden, 30 minutes from Merimbula, 45 minutes from Bega and 1 hour north of Mallacoota. Come paddling with us!