Bald Eagle Haliaeetus leucocephalus Scientific name definitions

David A. Buehler
Version: 2.0 — Published October 7, 2022

Priorities for Future Research


The Bald Eagle is among the most studied North American bird species, with more than 2,000 published articles as of 1979 (440), and probably more than 750 articles since 1979. Basic life history has been well documented, especially by observations on reproduction by pioneering studies of Herrick (209, 151, 225, 148). Other excellent modern accounts on life history and management were written by Stalmaster (18) and Gerrard and Bortolotti (266). A comprehensive review was published by Palmer et al. (1).

Populations have been monitored extensively across much of this species' range since 1980, especially in the 48 contiguous United States. Contemporary monitoring and population estimation approaches that include multiple data sources (e.g., traditional nest monitoring, aerial random plot surveys, eBird records, banding data) have led to rigorous estimates (309, 109). Continued periodic population monitoring (population size and trend) is warranted. Additional research/monitoring is needed in populations that remain extremely low (e.g., Mexico, Arizona, southern California) to foster sustainable populations. Periodic monitoring of environmental contaminants (e.g., pesticides, heavy metals) and the effects of disease outbreaks, such as avian influenza, are warranted because poisoning represents one of the most significant threats to reproduction and survival, and disease outbreaks may ultimately limit populations.

Recommended Citation

Buehler, D. A. (2022). Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus), version 2.0. In Birds of the World (P. G. Rodewald and S. G. Mlodinow, Editors). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/bow.baleag.02