Eagle and falcon are the most famous, sometimes we may confuse them as the same birds because of their common features such as carnivores in diet and diurnal, etc.
The main differences between eagles and falcons are size, speed, and diet. Eagles are much larger than falcons, which makes them better hunters. They also eat fish, while falcons only eat birds. Finally, eagles are migratory, while falcons stay in one place.
Differences Between Eagle And Falcon
The following table compares the features of the eagle and falcon such as height, speed, wing shape, and much more.
|1||Height||40cm to 100cm||25cm to 60cm|
|2||Weight||8 Kg||1.5 Kg|
|3||Wingspan||9 feet 4 inches||2 feet 4 feet|
|6||Eyesight||6-8compared to humans||4-7compared to humans|
|7||Foot and talons||Stronger than falcon||Strong but not as much as eagle’s|
|8||Temperament||More aggressive||Less aggressive|
|9||Feather color||golden, black, and grey blends||black, white, red, and silver.|
|10||Egg-color||whitish in color||whitish with dark brown|
|11||Egg no.||2 eggs||3 to 4 eggs|
|12||Incubation period||30 days||28-35 days|
|13||Nest build||Build own nest||Do not build nest|
|14||Rivalry within chicks||Sometime stronger eaglet kills the weaker for food||No killing|
|15||Migration||No migration, Short distance migration.||Travel 24000 km in a year.|
With respect to Aggressiveness, Eagles are commonly more aggressive than falcons, Therefore found to be either single or in pairs. In nesting and breeding seasons they are found to aggressively defend their territories and food sources.
However, the falcons on the other hand are less aggressive than the eagles. Eagles are opportunistic hunters because instead of preying on fishes directly, they force other fishing-birds to drop their fishes in the air thus soar in the mid-air and catch it.
- In size, the Eagles are larger than the falcons.
- In height, eagles can reach approximately 40cm to 100cm, whereas the falcon can reach approximately 25cm to 60cm in height.
- In wingspan length, the Eagles have a larger wingspan than the falcon. The eagle wingspan is around 9 feet 4 inches(wedge-tailed eagle) while the falcon wingspan is around 2 feet 4 feet(peregrine falcon) in length. Eagles have a broader wingspan resulting in more surface area so they can fly and take advantage of the warm airlifts.
- In weight, Eagles weigh more than falcons, due to the eagle’s size compared to the falcon.
- The average eagle can weigh around 18 pounds(8Kg) while the average falcon weight is around 3 pounds(1.5Kg).
Note: The largest eagle is the golden eagle, weighing approximately about 6 Kg.
- The largest falcon species called the Gyrfalcon, which can weigh around 1.4Kg.
- In strength, the eagles are stronger than the falcon due to their size.
- The eagle’s muscular body, hooked beaks, and very strong legs armed with stronger long hind talons, So eagles are stronger than falcons. Whereas the falcons have hooked beaks with tomial teeth and sharp talons.
- Among birds, Falcons are also powerful, however, when we compare the eagle and falcons, the eagles are more powerful than falcons.
- In beak, The falcons have a special tomial tooth whereas the eagle has a hooked beak.
- The falcon attacks the neck and vertebra of the prey using its tomial tooth to kill them soon.
- In eyesight, The eagle has better eyesight than the falcon.
- When compared to other birds both the eagle and the falcon have good eyesight.
- The falcon eye color is black or dark brown, while the eagle has different types of eye colors that vary within eagles species.
- In flying speed, the falcons are faster than the eagles. The speed of the Golden eagle(Aquila chrysaetos) is 250-322 kmph. The speed of the Peregrine falcon is 390 kmph.
- The color of the feather in both eagle and falcon vary. The color of the feathers is golden, black, and grey blends of an eagle, while falcon feathers are black, white, red, and silver.
- The feathers of eagles and falcons are different. The falcon has pointed wings, whereas the eagle has broad and round wings.
Hunting Strategies are different in both eagle and falcons, As eagles are larger compared to the falcons, it usually hunts larger prey than the falcons. While hunting the prey, The eagles hunt the prey while actively flying in the air then carry while flying in mid-air. Whereas falcons hunt prey by striking the prey while swooping with speed.
- Even though Eagle and Falcon are both carnivores, they have differences in their diet.
- The food or prey of the eagles are reptiles such as snakes, vertebrates like rabbits, and turtles, mammals such as small deers, muskrats, fishes, and birds like waterfowls. Golden eagles are found to be fed on deers.
- The foods or prey of the falcons are small birds, such as doves and pigeons, depending on their habitat and type of falcon. The sounds produced by the eagle are different from that of the falcons, that is, eagles produce sounds that are screams whereas falcons produce shrill, yelping, kik-kik-kik sounds noises.
- The migration Eagles do not engage in migration as long as an unfavorable environment occurs. Whereas falcons can engage in migrations up to 24,000Km in a year.
The number of eggs produced will vary in eagle and falcons. Most eagles on average lay 2 eggs whereas falcons, on the other hand, produce or lay 3 to 4 eggs. The egg-color will vary in eagle and falcons. In eagle, eggs are whitish. In falcons, eggs are whitish and with dark brown markings. The incubation period required for egg hatching in an eagle is 30 days and it is 28 to 35 days in the falcon.
The nest height and size are different in both eagle and falcon. Most eagles prefer to build their nest at very height locations like in tall trees or cliffs. However, Falcon does not build nests but uses scrapes, cliff holes, and manmade structures as nests.
The nests of eagles are usually larger than the falcons because of several reasons and adaptations like eagles are weight more than the falcon, the eagle can use nests for longer durations, eagles nests are bigger and solid due to the twigs and thorns deposition by the eagles.
Did you know, The older hatched chicks(eaglet) of eagle kill and eat the next hatching or hatched younger chicks, to reach its nutrition requirements and also to mature.
These elder eaglets eat younger, weaker sibling eaglets mostly in the case parents fail to feed them regularly, or feeding is delayed. So to prevent the weaker eaglet from being killed by its stronger sibling parents have to feed them before falling into starvation. However, The elder eaglet kills the younger eaglet so that it is only fed by its parents later on. In falcon chicks, this type of rivalry is not seen.
Even though eagle and falcon look similar concerning their carnivore’s diet, diurnal activities, they are different from each other in morphology, hunting strategy, and also in their scientific classification that both belong to different families. The family of eagles and falcon are different
The eagles belong to the family Accipitridae that has around 60 types of eagle species. Whereas falcons belong to the family Falconidae that includes 40 types of falcon species.
Let’s Visualize the Table for Easy Understanding
(Corresponding different species)
|40 different species of falcons arePeregrine Falcon Prairie FalconGyrfalcon Aplomado FalconAmur FalconSooty FalconBat FalconBlack Falcon||60 different species of eagles areBald eagle.Golden eagle.White-bellied Sea-eagle Sanford’s Sea-eagleAfrican Fish-eagleMadagascar Fish-eaglePallas’s Fish-eagleWhite-tailed EagleSteller’s Sea-eagle|
Read More : Eagle vs Hawk ?
Why are Eagles so Special?
Eagles are opportunistic hunters because instead of preying on fishes directly, they force other fishing-birds to drop their fishes in the air thus soar in the mid-air and catch it. They enjoy high altitudes flight; it is the main characteristic that makes eagles so special and also unique among other birds. Eagles mate for life and can use the same nest for a longer duration. They show less migration.
What do Falcons and Eagles have in Common? Both are carnivores, birds of prey, diurnal in nature, and have keen eyesight.
Which Bird is Faster ?
Falcon is faster than the eagles because the eagle has broad and round wings whereas falcon have long and pointed wings and the weight and size of the eagle are more than the falcon. Nostrils of falcon support and adapted for faster flight.
Can a Falcon kill an Eagle?
To avoid damages from each other both falcon and eagle avoid each other, as they are comparably strong hunters in their own ways. However, if either of them felt threatened due to the other they fought badly with their own strategies to defend their chicks and also to survive.
Which Bird of prey has the Sharpest Eyesight? The eagle has good eyesight when compared to the falcons eyesight. Both eagle and falcon have keen eyesight, when compared to other birds.
Who would win Falcon or Eagle?
- In speed, Falcon is faster than eagle so falcon will be faster. Because falcons use different techniques of flight such as swooping, flashing talons in the air, etc.
- In-ground, the eagle wins against the falcon in the battle between them because eagles have a larger muscular body and foot armed with long talons than the falcon.
Note: On the ground, the eagle would win the battle because, In height, weight, strong muscular body, and muscular foot eagles are advanced.
- In beak attacks, the falcon has comparatively more chance of winning because it has a tomial tooth on its beak that is absent in the eagle.
- In talon attacks, the eagle wins against the falcon in a battle between them through talons on the ground because eagles have a larger muscular body and foot armed with long talons than the falcon.
- The feet and talons of the eagles are so powerful that they use them against foxes to break their skull with strong compressions.