The Bald Eagle is both the national bird and the national animal of the United States and appears on its Seal. If you think about it, there is often a decorative “head” on your American flag holder that is in the shape of a Bald Eagle. For me, the bird and the flag bring on the same emotion of patriotism whenever I see them.

I have had the good fortune to live in Washington state and New York state near where Bald Eagles live. I have seen the huge bird swooping the lake to grab a fish and it is a sight like no other. It makes you wonder how such a big bird can do such minute movements.

The name “Bald Eagle” derives from an older meaning of “white headed” as the bird is actually not bald. The adult eagle is mainly brown with a white head and tail. Their nests are the largest nests of any North American bird and the largest tree nests for any animal species. The biggest recorded eagle’s nest was found in St. Petersburg, Florida.  It measured 9.5 feet in diameter and 20 feet deep.  It weighed in at nearly 3 tons. (That’s a lot of sticks and mud. I wonder how they weighed it.)

At one time the Bald Eagle was on the endangered species list, but is no longer due to conservation and their ability to adapt to loss of natural habitat.

If you haven’t, I hope you get the chance to personally see a Bald Eagle fly over a lake. It’s one of those things that to be seen in nature is so much more impressive than seeing it on television. The size of the wing span will take your breath away.