Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Papuan Eagle

Harpyopsis novaeguineae
Meet the Papuan Eagle, a large bird of prey that happens to be the only member of its genus, Harpyopsis. They do actually belong to a subfamily that contains three other birds, including the South American Hapry Eagle, and the Papuan Eagle is also sometimes referred to as the Papuan Harpy Eagle because of that close relationship.

You could probably guess that the Papuan Eagle lives in Papua New Guinea. They are endemic to the island of New Guinea, and are one of its top predators. They feed primarily on Phalangers, which are a type of tree-dwelling Marsupial. The Eagles fly above the canopy, spot the Phalangers, and then swoop in and take them right from the trees.

Papuan Eagles are listed as Vulnerable because they only live in one location on the entire planet, because that location is undergoing habitat loss, and because the Eagles are hunted for their feathers, reducing their population size.

IUCN Status : Vulnerable
Location : New Guinea
Size : Length up to 3ft (.9m), Wingspan up to 5ft (1.6m)
Classification : Phylum : Chordata -- Class : Aves -- Order : Accipitriformes
Family : Accipitridae -- Genus : Harpyopsis -- Species : H. novaeguineae
Image : Hector Ceballos-Lascurain

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