Eagle large diurnal bird of prey with exceptionally keen vision, long, powerful wings, hooked bill, feathered legs and strong feet with sharp curved talons. These birds along with hawks, harriers and old-world vultures comprise the family Accipitridae of the order Ciconiiformes. They are fierce predators, spotting their animal prey as they soar or from their perches, and then swooping to kill. Since ancient times eagles have been used as symbols of empire, of courage, or of military prowess. Their likeness is found on Greek and Roman ruins, coins and medals. Eagle is also the emblem of Bangladesh Air Force. The bald eagle was adopted as the emblem of the United States.
Table Eagles of Bangladesh (Aves, Ciconiiformes: Accipitridae).
|Scientific name||English name||Local name||Distribution|
|Circaetus gallicus||Short-toed Snake Eagle [Short-toed Eagle]||--||Forest of Sylhet, Chittagong and Chittagong Hill Tracts|
|Haliaeetus leucogaster||White-bellied Sea Eagle||Sada Eagle/ Sindhu Eagle||Sundarbans, Coast|
|Haliaeetus leucoryphus||Pallas’s Fish Eagle [Pallas’s Fishing Eagle]||Kuda/Bowla/ Koral||Wide|
|Ichthyophaga ichthyaetus||Grey-headed Fish Eagle [Grey-headed Fishing Eagle]||Machhmoral/ Ukosh||Wide|
|Spilornis cheela||Crested Serpent Eagle||Tila Baj/ Sapkheko Baj||Wide|
|Spizaetus cirrhatus||Changeable Hawk Eagle [Crested Hawk-Eagle]||--||Forests, woods|
|Aquila clanga||Greater Spotted Eagle||Chitra Eagle||Haors, coastal islands|
|Aquila heliaca||Imperial Eagle||--||--|
|Aquila nipalensis||Steppe Eagle||--||Dhaka, Khulna, Chittagong|
|Aquila pomarina||Lesser Spotted Eagle||-- Haors, coast|
|Aquila rapax||Eastern Steppe Eagle [Tawny Eagle]||Khoieri Eagle||Coast|
|Hieraaetus fasciatus||Bonelli’s Eagle||--||Forest of Sylhet, Chittagong and Chittagong Hill Tracts|
|Hieraaetus kienerii||Rufous-bellied Eagle [Rufous-bellied Hawk-Eagle]||--||--|
|Hieraaetus pennatus||Booted Eagle [Booted Hawk-Eagle]||Katua Cheel||Barisal, coast|
|Ictinaetus malayensis||Black Eagle||--||Forests of Mymensingh, Tangail, Sylhet, Chittagong and Chittagong Hill Tracts|
NB: Previous names are given in square brackets.
There are about 30 species of eagles found worldwide. Bangladesh has 15 species, six are resident and nine are migratory (Table). Pallas's fish eagle, a globally threatened species, is critically endangered in Bangladesh. Of the migratory species Greater Spotted Eagle and Imperial Eagle are also globally threatened. [Md Anwarul Islam]