Prey of primary, secondary, and tertiary importance in nesting season diets of Golden Eagles in the western United States, Alaska, and northern Canada summarized by CEC Level II Ecoregiona. Number of prey items are the minimum number of individuals identified.

Ecoregion Level IIb

Years (areas)

# Prey Items

Primary Prey

Secondary Prey

Tertiary Prey

Southern Arctic, Canadac

4 (1)


Sciurids (U. parryii g)

Waterfowl (Branta canadensis, Somateria spp.)

Leporids (Lepus arcticus)

Alaska Tundrad

2 (1)


Sciurids (S. parryii g)

Birds (Lagopus spp.)

Waterfowl (F. Anatidae)

Boreal Cordillera e

13 (1)


Sciurids (S. parryii g)

Leporids (Lepus americanus)

Birds (Lagopus lagopus)

Western Cordillera f

45 (1)


Sciurids (O. variegatusi)

Sciurids (Marmota spp.)

Leporids (Lepus spp.)

West Central Semi-Arid Prairies f

7 (3)


Leporids (Lepus spp., Sylvilagus spp.)


Sciurids (Cynomys spp.k, Marmota spp.)

South Central Semi-Arid Prairies f

1 (1)


Leporids (Lepus spp., Sylvilagus spp.)

Sciurids (Cynomys spp.k)

Other mammals

Cold Deserts f

129 (22)


Leporids (Lepus spp., Sylvilagus spp.)

Sciurids (Otospermophilus/ Urocitellus/Marmota/Cynomys spp.k)


Warm Deserts f

10 (6)


Leporids (Lepus spp., Sylvilagus spp.)

Sciurids (O. variegatusi)

Other mammals

Mediterranean California f

8 (3)


Sciurids (O. beecheyij)

Other mammals

Leporids (Lepus spp.)

Upper Gila Mountains f

1 (1)


Leporids (Lepus spp., Sylvilagus spp.)

Other mammals

Sciurids (O. variegatusi, Cynomys spp.k)

a From Table 2 in Bedrosian et al. (304), except for the Southern Arctic, Boreal Cordillera, and Alaska Tundra ecoregions.

b (CEC 2016)

c Poole and Bromley (134), North-central Nunavut, Canada (68° N)

d Herzog et al. (344), Seward Peninsula, Alaska (65° N)

e Carol L. McIntyre (unpublished data), Denali National Park, Alaska (64° N)

f See Bedrosian et al. (304) for specific data sources, years of study, and study locations.

g Urocitellus parryii, Arctic ground squirrel

i Otospermophilus variegatus, Rock squirrel

j Otospermophilus beecheyi, California ground squirrel

k Cynomys spp., prairie dogs