|White-bellied Sea Eagle
for a very large bird of prey (fig.), with the scientific name Haliaeetus
leucogaster. It is grey above (fig.),
with a white head, neck and underparts (fig.). Its tail is white with a black bar, the
wings white and black (fig.).
The legs are yellowish and the bill is grey with a somewhat darker tip. The upper mandible is enlarged and curved downward at the
tip, over the shorter, lower mandible
(fig.). When gliding its wings are
V-shaped. First year juveniles are very different in plumage. They
have a dingy brownish breast-wash, a dull buffish-cream head and an
off-white tail with a dark brownish subterminal band. On the
underside, the wings have warm buffish coverts, and a large whitish
patch on the primaries, that contrasts with blackish secondaries and
primary tips (fig.).
In their third year juveniles will gradually transform into a much
lighter plumage, first becoming mostly buffish-white, while keeping
the blackish secondaries
and primary tips, until they eventually
reach the white, grey and black colours of adults. The
White-bellied Sea Eagle
a mainly coastal raptor, though it may travel some distance inland
to feed. It is one of the largest raptors in Southeast Asia and is found near rocky shores, islets and sometimes at
larger inland water bodies. Also known as White-bellied Fish-eagle
and White-breasted Sea Eagle, and in Thai as
nok ouk and
nok insih thalae.
See also WILDLIFE PICTURES.