I love this bird because it is powerful, self-sustaining, and abundant. You can find it just about anywhere near a freshwater lake or river in sub-Saharan Africa.
Haliaeetus vocifer have special structures on their toes called spiricules to enable them to grasp fish. I have seen many of these majestic eagles perched in tree snags beside a river or marsh, hunting for their namesake prey. If they catch a fish that is too big to carry, they’ll drag the fish across the water’s surface to shore. And if the fish is so heavy that it cannot be dragged, the eagle will drop into the water and use its wings to paddle to shore.
I like that resolve!
Photo credit: Athena Alexander