The Largest Eagles In The World: Meet 11 Giant Eagles✔️ (2024)

Eagles are impressive birds of prey that are amongst the most feared predators in the natural world.

Many of the largest eagles in the world are apex predators, dominating their environment, whilst at the same time experiencing habitat loss and being hunted by humans. These issues combined with climate change mean that many eagle species are in danger of becoming extinct. In fact, the largest eagle below is Haast’s eagle, which was hunted to extinction around 600 years ago.

Whilst there are plenty of other large birds of prey around the world, eagles are synonymous with strength, authority, and agility. It’s for these reasons – and their incredible presence – that eagles are used as national symbols for countries as diverse as Panama and Japan.

Let’s have a look at 11 of the largest eagles in the world, listed below by reverse wingspan size:

African Crowned Eagle (Stephanoaetus coronatus)

Weight: 4.7 kgs
Wingspan: 2 meters

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Head feathers of an African crowned eagle

The African crowned eagle is not the largest eagle in Africa, but is the most powerful eagle in Africa by some way due to the combination of their weight and thick legs with long talons.

They live in live Africa’s rainforests and woodland forests and are also seen on Africa’s savannas. Built for flying among trees, their wings are relatively short and broad, with a long rudder-like tail to help navigate through the branches.

The crowned eagle preys on animals up to four times their own weight, swooping down and breaking the prey’s spine with their talon. This diet includes African monkeys, guinea fowl, hyraxes, snakes, mongoose, and small antelopes.

Philippine Eagle (aka Monkey Eagle) (Pithecophaga jefferyi)

Weight: 8 kgs
Wingspan: 2 meters

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Philippine eagle in profile

The massive Philippine Eagle is a striking bird with blue-tinged black bill, pale gray-blue eyes, neon yellow feet, and creamy brown feathers.

This extremely rare predator is found on just four of the Philippine’s 7,000 islands, preferring to nest and hunt in the country’s ever-decreasing pristine primary forest. The Philippine eagles do eat monkeys but also preys on other medium and small-sized animals such as bats, civets, flying squirrels, other birds, snakes, and lizards.

Harpy Eagle (Harpia harpyja)

Weight: 9 kgs
Wingspan: 2 meters

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The beautiful harpy eagle

Though not the largest eagle in the world, a case can be made that harpy eagles are the most powerful eagles around. Their long talons have enough strength to break a human’s arm, and are put to good use hunting on sloths, monkeys, and other large birds.

The harpy eagle wingspan is shorter than most other large birds of prey to allow them maneuverability in their habitats of dense forests in Central and South America. These stunning eagles are the national bird of Panama.

Verreaux’s Eagle (Aquila verreauxii)

Weight: 4.2 kgs
Wingspan: 2.3 meters

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Verreaux’s eagle in flight

Verreaux’s eagle is found in rocky, mountainous regions and East and Northeast Africa. This bird of prey has a highly specialized diet of hyrax, though in times of scarcity will hunt other small and medium-sized animals, including monkeys.

This is one of the few eagles on this list that practices siblicide, when the largest of the hatchlings either directly kills its siblings, or takes all the available food, leaving them to starve to death.

Australian Wedge-Tailed Eagle (aka Bunjil and Eaglehawk) (Aquila audax)

Weight: 5.3 kgs
Wingspan: 2.3 meters

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Australian wedge-tailed eagle on a carrion

Australasia is home to many large birds, but the Australian wedge-tailed eagle is the largest bird of prey in Australia or Guinea. They are found at both the sea-level and the mountainous regions, preferring open lands and forested landscapes.

The name comes from their characteristic wedge-shaped tail, which combines with a pale beak, white feet, and dark brown colour around the eyes to make them easily distinguishable.

Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos)

Weight: 6.4 kgs
Wingspan: 2.3 meters

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Golden eagle gliding

Golden eagles have a wide range across the northern hemisphere which covers North America, Europe, Asia, and small parts of North Africa. They are the largest bird of prey in North America and the national bird of Mexico.

These large predators are fast birds that use their speed and talons to hunt primarily mid-sized mammals, though have been known to capture prey the size of coyotes and pronghorns.

White-Tailed Eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla)

Weight: 5 kgs
Wingspan: 2.4 meters

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A white-tailed sea eagle catches a meal

The white-tailed sea eagle is the largest European eagle, and is found in a wide range of habitats across Europe, Russia, and the mountains of northern Japan. The eagle has a brown body, offset by a bright white tail and yellow legs, feet, eyes and beak.

Their diet primarily consists of fish and other birds, but as with many eagles, they are opportunistic hunters, happy to target small and medium-sized mammals and reptiles. After continued conservation efforts the species was removed from the endangered species list.

American Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)

Weight: 7.5 kgs
Wingspan: 2.5 meters

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The iconic American bald eagle

With a white crest against its large, brown body and wings, the bald eagle is one of the most recognisable of all eagles – as well as being one of the largest.

It’s the national animal of the United States of America, and also a symbol for ever-lasting love as a bird that mates for life. From their first meeting locking talons and spinning through the sky, the bald eagle mates for life – spending each winter alone and meeting their partner each year for the breeding season. The male eagle helps feed the chicks for their first few months, and the breeding pair keep the same nest throughout their whole lives, improving and adding to the structure each year.

Steller’s Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus pelagicus)

Weight: 9 kgs
Wingspan: 2.5 meters

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Steller’s sea eagle catches a salmon

The Steller’s sea eagle is one of the largest eagles in the world, and one of the heaviest with an average weight of 9 kilgrams, native to coastal areas of Eastern Eurasia and Japan.

This bird of prey is easily distinguished by its very large and powerful, yellow beak. They use this to hunt salmon, but supplement their diet with shellfish, crustaceans, and even baby seals if the opportunities arise.

Martial Eagle (Polemaetus bellicosus)

Weight: 6.2 kgs
Wingspan: 2.6 meters

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Martial eagle on its nest

The Martial eagle is Africa’s largest bird of prey with its 2.6 meter wingspan. It’s such a powerful bird that it’s capable of knocking an adult man off his feet.

This magnificent bird is found across sub-Saharan Africa in open and semi-open areas from Senegal to Somalia and south to the Cape. It hunts mammals as large as small antelopes, monkeys, reptiles, and other large birds, though is not known to scavenge. Because martial eagles are known to attack livestock they are frequently hunted down by farmers.

Haast’s Eagle (Harpagornis moorei)

Weight: 17.8 kgs
Wingspan: 3 meters

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Whatt the Haast’s eagle could have looked like

The Haast’s eagle may look like a fictional beast, but is the world’s largest known eagle ever to have lived. This giant eagle weighed up to 17.8 kg and had a wingspan with a total length of 3 meters, making it the most ferocious apex predator in its range of New Zealand’s southern islands.

It’s thought that the Haast’s eagle prey of other large flightless birds was hunted to extinction by early human settlers of New Zealand in the 1400s, ultimately causing the Haast’s eagle to become extinct around the same time.

And that’s your lot for our round-up of the largest eagles in the world. Have you had the opportunity to see any of these stunning raptors in real life? Please share your bird of prey experiences in the comments section below!

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The Largest Eagles In The World: Meet 11 Giant Eagles✔️ (2024)

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