Golden Eagle Snags Mountain Goat & Drops It Off A Cliff For Easy Meal

Golden eagle
Nature Is Metal

I think we tend to underestimate just how big and strong eagles are. Of course, many of us go our whole lives without ever seeing. Living near the water in Wisconsin, I see my fair share of bald eagles, red tailed-hawks and other birds of prey, and it’s always such a treat. Big, powerful, there’s a certain majesty and reverence to them… but there’s also this kind of fearful respect. Not because you have to be afraid of being attacked by one (watch your yappy dog though)… but they are stone cold killers, patrolling our skies.

But if you live in a place where you don’t get to see them in action, we have videos like this that prove the strength of these birds. This one comes from BBC’s Frozen Planet II, in the Italian Alps where you can see a golden eagle swoop in over the edge of a cliff. You can see the bird struggling for a moment, but next thing you know it has a whole mountain goat hanging from its talons as it begins to fly away.

With a wingspan ranging from 6 to 8 feet, and a body length of about 2.5 to 3.5 feet, golden eagles are some of the most skilled hunters you’ll find anywhere. They have a sharp, hooked beak capable of tearing through flesh, and powerful talons with a strong grip force. But it’s their keen eyesight that is really the secret weapon as it helps them spot prey from great distances.

Their diet consists of small to medium-sized mammals, such as rabbits, hares, ground squirrels, and marmots, but they’ll prey on anything they can really get their claws on, including carrion. Capable of reaching diving speeds of 150 miles per hour, they also have the strongest grip of any raptor, which is how they can carry fairly large mammals through the air. Sometimes golden eagles will use their powerful talons to drag large animals, like mountain-inhabiting goats, right off the side of a cliff, and then swoop down to collect their easy meal.

Back to the video… it appears that the “goat” is actually a “goat-antelope” called a chamois, which is native to many of the well known European mountain ranges (Alps, Carpathian, Balkan). You can visibly see the goat still struggling as it hangs from the bird’s talons, high above the rocky cliffs.

However, the eagle can’t hold on for much longer as the mountain goat was still battling as much as it could, and that’s all part of the plan. You see, the eagle isn’t trying to hold on forever… it’s trying to hold on just long enough to get the goat out off the edge. And then, bombs away… the eagle drops the goat several hundred feet to its death. It’s a perfect live depiction of the brutality of nature. Although, one might argue that falling to an instant death is better than being picked apart, piece by piece, by the eagle (or another predator).

The caption to the video reads:

“The golden eagle, one of nature’s most powerful avian hunters, showcases a display of raw strength and precision. With fierce determination, it swoops in, clutches a mountain goat, and despite the weight, ascends skywards. High above, where the air is thin and the world below seems distant, it releases its prey, letting gravity do the final deed.

Yet, the eagle isn’t alone in its airborne tactics. The osprey, a master of the sea with keen eyes and sharp talons, often plucks its aquatic prey with finesse. But sometimes, a wriggling fish proves challenging, leading the osprey to release and drop it from high above, only to swoop down and reclaim its catch, now subdued and easier to grip.”

Nature is incredible… and golden eagles are some of the most fascinating. So much so, that some parts of the world actually train these birds to hunt deer, boar and other wild game.

Check it out:

Fox Narrowly Escapes Death After Golden Eagle Swoops In

This is what they call in my neck of the woods, a fight to the death.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that eagles are incredibly graceful, yet also incredibly vicious at the same time. Basically majestic, flying dinosaurs. The strength of eagles’ talons are so strong, that they can swoop in and fly off with any small mammals when they want to, and they have dinner on the table for the night.

In this video, we see a golden eagle attempt to swoop in and take hold of a fox. Luckily enough, the fox caught a glimpse of the eagle swooping in from the sky, and had enough time to react and defend itself. The eagle tries multiple times to grab the fox with its talons, but the fox is able to avoid them with its quick reflexes.

Sure enough, the fox escapes, and the golden eagle goes home empty handed. Perhaps the wildest part, is that foxes aren’t even the biggest creatures that golden eagles hunt. These killers will hunt bighorn sheep, deer, bobcats, and even coyotes.

It’s pretty wild to imagine an eagle taking down a brutal predator like a bobcat, but it’s a testament to just how strong these creatures are.

Check it out:

Helluva shot:

Deer Hunting With Eagles

I see your rifle hunt, I see your bow hunt, and I raise you… hunting deer with an eagle.

We all know about running dogs while hunting feral hogs (or bears for the folks that do that), but never in my life have I seen an eagle, one of the world’s most pristine birds, be used for deer hunting. A video has gone viral of a hunter releasing an eagle, as the deer sprints off in the other direction.

Sure enough, the eagle tracks down the deer, taking down its prey, and that’s ballgame.

This type of hunting is practiced in parts of Europe, particularly in Hungary, as well as Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Mongolia. A few videos have surfaced over the years of this practice, but have been few and far between.

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