Golden Eagle

"Magnificent and Adaptable"

golden eagle
        Did you know there are eagles visible in southern Utah most any time of the year?  It's the Golden Eagle you'll see, often mistaken for the immature Bald, because of its size and markings.  This bird is not only prevalent in North America, but has adapted in one form or another throughout the world.
        A Golden Eagle was spotted several times last year flying close to Red Mountain.  Another sure area you could find the Golden Eagle both Spring and Summer is Cedar Mountain, on the ungraded road between Kolob Reservoir and Cedar Canyon.  On one such trip to check on our horses, we came upon two Golden Eagles, doing what they do best, eating a dead deer carcass.  Golden Eagles are opportunists as well as being aerial hunters.  No reason to let a fresh road kill go to waste whether it's deer, coyote, squirrel or rabbit.
        At East Zion, we were witness to a Golden Eagle making off with a full load of rabbit hanging from his talons, ripping, climbing and then swooping down, climbing again...such a heavy load to carry home for dinner.
       Unfortunately, eagles are killed each year by cars while feeding on road kill.  Their natural tendency is to protect their dinner and at 60 mph they may stay in the protective mode too long and end up as a vehicle's hood ornament.  Keep in mind, if you see a Golden Eagle feeding on road kill, it is slow to take off and may fly in any direction...including at your windshield.  Evasive maneuvers are safer at 30 mph.
       When driving the high, cool country this summer, watch the tops of the pine trees and the high rocks on the horizon.  You might see a Golden Eagle perched in his favorite place.  Eagles, like people, spend what time they can in cooler climates.
        Brenda Rusnell is the artist of this splendid Golden Eagle.  Thank you, Brenda, for the time you spend and your great talent as an artist.


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