Juvenile White-bellied Sea-eagle

Stuart Humphreys

Australian Museum

Australian Museum
Sydney, Australia

Juvenile White-bellied Sea-eagle
Haliaeetus leucogaster

Young eaglets are cared for by both parents in the nest for about two months before becoming adult-sized and fully feathered. They reach adult plumage and the characteristic white head, body and tail, and grey wings between four to five years. In Australia, the species is most vulnerable at the onset of nesting, where any disturbance (human or otherwise) can result in the pair deserting a nest site.Pairs are monogamous and mate for life, with one territory occupied by the same pair for more than 50 years. A pair will often engage in spectacular aerial displays as part of their courtship, including talon grappling, where talons are locked and the pair cartwheel downward. Adult White-bellied Sea-eagles are accomplished hunters. Their prey varies includes a wide variety of fish, mammals, birds, reptiles and crustaceans.

Distribution: Australia, Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, China, South-East Asia and India
Conservation status: Least Concern
Evolutionary distinctiveness: Low


  • Title: Juvenile White-bellied Sea-eagle
  • Creator: Stuart Humphreys
  • Publisher: Australian Museum
  • Rights: Australian Museum

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