HomeOutdoorsWatch: Bald Eagle Swoops Down, Snatching Duck Out of a Lake

Watch: Bald Eagle Swoops Down, Snatching Duck Out of a Lake

by Jon D. B.
Bald Eagle (Photo by Ian Evenden via Getty Images)

The footage shows a massive bald eagle swooping in for the kill on a Tennessee lake – and the unsuspecting duck that never stood a chance.

While filming on the shoreline of Dale Hollow Reservoir in Tennessee, an unnamed man manages to capture an incredible act of nature.

According to the Daily Mail, the man stood filming the eagle while it circled overhead. Seen 30 feet above the reservoir, the eagle narrows in for his kill. Below, a raft of ducks paddles on smooth water together. While typically capable of evading birds of prey while in a large flock – one fellow was not so lucky.

“I was on a fishing trip with some buddies at Dale Hollow,” the witness tells Daily Mail. ‘We watched the eagle stalk the duck for about an hour with a few failed attempts and then he finally got one and flew off.’ 

Bald Eagle Snatches Duck for Dinner

As mentioned, most species of ducks can evade raptors by staying with a tight flock. This particular duck, however, looks to become separated – before becoming dinner.

When paddling, if ducks are sticking to a tight formation, it typically means a predator is nearby. If the flock must take to the air, they will remain close to one another. With sharp, tight turns, they can continue to evade would-be predators.

On the other hand, eagles are expert hunters. Bald eagles can be opportunistic scavengers – but never lose their incredible hunting skills.

Their large size and immense talons make for exceptional bludgeoning weapons. Once prey is spotted on the ground or in a lake, a bald eagle will drop out of the sky and use its weight and speed to crush their target. Simultaneously, they latch on with their huge talons, digging into their meal. Typically, this kills the prey on contact.

If the bald eagle in this footage looks enormous – that’s because he, or more likely she – is. As with most raptor species, female bald eagles outweigh – and outsize – their male companions. An adult male baldy is typically 3 feet long from beak-to-tail. Their wingspan can reach 6.5 to 7 feet.

As enormous as that is, Females can be almost 4 feet long – and have documented wingspans of over a gargantuan 8 feet.