What is the Difference Between Eagle And Vulture? Know 4 Key Dissimilarity

Difference Between Eagle And Vulture: The two are predatory birds that are often considered to be the same. Let's learn about the differences between eagle vs vulture. 

Nov 21, 2023, 12:34 IST
Know in details the difference between Eagle and Vulture
Know in details the difference between Eagle and Vulture

Eagle and Vulture are two distinct bird species that are often confused to be the same. While both eagles and vultures are birds of prey and belong to the same taxonomic order, they have distinct characteristics that set them apart. 

Eagles are known for their powerful build, sharp talons, and excellent eyesight, which enable them to hunt and capture prey efficiently. On the other hand, vultures have a more scavenging nature, feeding primarily on carrion and possessing adaptations such as a bald head and a keen sense of smell to locate decaying carcasses. In this article, we will explain the difference between eagle vs vulture to clear up any confusion that you may have about these two birds.

An Eagle | Source: Flickr

Differences between Eagle and Vulture

Here we are listing the prominent differences between an eagle and a vulture. 

1. Appearance

  • Eagles are known for their large size, powerful build, sharp beaks, and talons. They have long, broad wings and a distinctively hooked beak that they use to tear apart their prey. 
  • On the other hand, vultures are generally smaller in size with a more hunched posture. They have a bald head and a sharp, hooked beak as well, but their wings are longer and narrower compared to eagles. 
  • One important thing to consider when differentiating between eagles and vultures is that size is not an accurate indicator. While the majority of eagle species are larger in size, some vulture species can be just as large or even larger than certain eagle species.

2. Characteristics

  • Another factor that can help distinguish between eagles and vultures is their flight patterns and feeding behaviours. Eagles are known for their powerful and graceful flight, often soaring high in the sky and diving down to catch their prey with their strong talons. 
  • Vultures, however, have a more sluggish flight, and since they are scavengers, they do not dive to catch their prey.

A Vulture | Source: Flickr

3. Diet

  • Eagles are carnivorous birds and primarily feed on small mammals, fish, and birds.
  • On the contrary, vultures have a diet mainly consisting of the carcasses of dead animals. They have a keen sense of smell that helps them locate decaying carcasses from miles away. 

4. Habitat

  • Eagles mostly inhabit areas near water bodies like ponds and streams. They build their nests high up in trees or on cliffs and prefer to stay away from humans.  
  • Vultures are usually found in open areas such as grasslands, savannahs, and deserts. They often roost in trees or on the ground near their food source. They are also known to nest in rocks, caves, ledges, and abandoned buildings. Like eagles, vultures also prefer to stay away from human activities. 

Eagle vs Vulture: Who is stronger? 

Both eagles and vultures are birds of prey and are considered to be some of the strongest bird species. While a vulture is known for its ability to soar for long periods and locate carrion from great distances, an eagle is known for its powerful talons and impressive hunting skills. In fact, the Harpy Eagle is the strongest bird of prey in the world. So, when it comes to strength, an eagle is overall stronger than a vulture. 

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