The white-tailed eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla) is a worldwide endangered species. It is the largest predatory bird in Romania and its wingspan reaches 2, 50 meters.
It is a migratory bird and it stays in the Danube’s Delta during fall and winter. White-tailed eagle pairs come to Romania from Northern Europe.
As an adult, this species of eagle has a yellowish white plumage, whereas young birds have a brown plumage. Their beak is strong, short and thick.
The feeding area of the white-tailed eagle spreads somewhere between 10 and 15 Km. Its prey consists mainly of aquatic species: rails, geese, ducks and small mammals.
Its massive nests are built in tall and strong trees. The bird will choose several places to build the nest, in order to keep it safe.
The white-tailed eagle reaches sexual maturity at age 4 or 5 and during one season it will build 3 to 5 nests. The female lays the eggs in one nest and the male will sleep in another. During January or February, the female lays 1 to 3 eggs. The incubation period lasts for 40 to 45 days. After hatching, the chicks are carried after by both parents.
The white-tailed eagle has no natural enemies, but the hunting season affects this species indirectly, because the white-tailed eagle also feeds on the carcasses of shot birds and the lead shots contained in them are poisonous.
During the last worldwide census, were counted 7 000 pairs of white-tailed eagle. In our country there can be found 20 to 25 nesting pairs.