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Eagle-burial ground: a bird on the verge of extinction

The eagle-burial ground is a bird, around which there are many legends: an awesome name imposes its imprint. But, unfortunately, it is on the verge of extinction. About whether you can prevent the extinction of a unique species of birds, read the article.

A new kind of falconry

At the beginning of the XIX century, the territory of tsarist Russia began the mass development and study of the steppes of the Aral Sea and Kazakhstan. During the studies on old barrows, groups of birds were seen, outwardly similar to the golden eagle. The local population called them simply eagles, but the researchers, after finding the distinctive features, singled out a separate species and called it the "burial ground".

In the Southern Urals , eagle-burial birds have long been revered by locals, however, like all members of the hawk family. Bashkirs, Tatars and other nationalities of the Trans-Volga and the Urals are protected by eagles as sacred birds, where they were called "Burkut".

Many names are taken from the people, but literally from Latin the name of this species of eagle Aquila heliaca is translated as "the solar eagle", and in English-speaking countries it is called Imperial eagle ("the imperial eagle").


The distribution of the eagle burial ground is not universal, it lives in the steppe zone, forest-steppe and mixed forests of Eastern Russia and southern Siberia. The nesting grounds in Europe and Asia have been noted - from the Baikal area to the Altai, in the Urals, periodic nests have been found throughout Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Transcaucasia, Mongolia and China.

Despite the maximum concentration of the burial ground on the territory of Eastern Europe and Asia, this bird also lives on the Iberian Peninsula, which indicates the disruption of the habitat.


The eagle-burial ground is a bird, which in appearance resembles its congeners. But there is a feathered and distinctive feature - epaulettes, white spots on the shoulders. The photos of the burial ground bird clearly demonstrate this difference.

The length of the body varies from 60 to 84 cm (in female eagles much larger than males). The wingspan of the cemetery is 180-215 cm, which is slightly inferior to the closest relative - the golden eagle, whose length of the wings during the flight is 180-240 cm. The weight of the bird varies from 2.4 kg to 4.5 kg. Nestlings are born fluffy, color fluff white, only to 5-7 years of life birds acquire distinctive color.

Activity and Vocalization

The eagle-burial ground is a bird (the description of appearance is given in this article), which is most active in the daytime. This is due to the warm airflow, allowing it for a long time to soar, looking out for prey.

The burial ground is a bird whose voice is similar to the vocalization of other eagles. Only during the breeding season does he make sounds resembling a dog's barking, and "croaks" when approaching predators.

Nutrition and feeding behavior

The basis of the fodder base of the cemetery is gophers, whose populations are reduced annually. This is due to the development of new land. Does not exclude the eagle from its diet and other small rodents. Sometimes the burial ground allows itself even hunting for birds, representatives of grouse and ravens become priority. Easily catch even a quick-headed hare.

Like all birds of prey, this species of eagles does not disdain carrion, which explains the high concentration of hawks' representatives on old burial grounds.


Burial ground - a bird that begins to multiply from 5-7 years, by this time the period of growing up is over and the plumage changes. It is believed that in the territory of the post-Soviet space this species of eagles prefers to place nests on coniferous trees, but this is not entirely true. Representatives of the hawks are pleased to learn the parts of the forest-steppe, where there are trees in excess of 15 meters. The choice can fall on the rocks, where there are flat areas.

The female once a year lays 1 to 3 eggs at intervals of a couple of days, most often this is the end of March, the whole of April, sometimes the breeding season captures the beginning of May (depending on the region of habitation).

Cemeteries - one of the few birds, odnolyubov. But this is not their only feature - a couple of burial grounds in a favorable situation does not leave a nest, which annually increases in size (which gives the eagle the goal of improvement, since this representative of hawks has a much smaller nest).

Bird-burial: how to prevent extinction

Unfortunately, the number of this bird is constantly decreasing, as well as many other unique species.

As it was already written above, the burial ground is a bird that chooses tall trees for the nest, giving preference to the tops of the pines, settling less often on deciduous species. However, in the last 25-30 years, mass felling of forest plantations is taking place, which are not replenished with new plantings, which leads to a reduction in bird nesting sites.

Another reason that put the burial ground on the path of extinction is the reduction of fields, steppes, where gophers live, which are its main food base. On the second place after the rodents in the food chain are representatives of the crow, which are also actively exterminated by man as pests of crops.

In connection with the above information, the following ways of preserving the population of the eagle-burial ground can be distinguished:

  • Support of reserves in the territory of which the groups of cemeteries live;
  • Creation of artificial nest platforms on the basis of reserves;
  • Exchange between zoos, which have the opportunity to create conditions for the reproduction of hawks;
  • Carrying out nature protection actions on the basis of reserves, zoos;
  • Preservation of fodder base of burial grounds (ground squirrels and crows) by creating sanctuaries.


In the main habitat, the number of eagle-burial mounds is up to 2000 pairs, which, considering the total area of the territory, is an extremely low indicator. The preservation of the eagle-burial ground as a species largely depends on the agrarian and environmental policy of the state, in particular, on the development of agriculture: expansion of pastures (large ungulates are eaten by high plant fields, and low vegetation is suitable for the life of rodents, which, in turn, attract predators ), Creation of forest plantations around fields.

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