Plucky water bird stabs eagle in heart with beak

Plucky water bird stabs eagle in heart with beak

Loon fights eagle

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Jon Winslow / Department of Inland Fisheries

Image caption

Loons have been known to defend their chicks against eagles

As with global affairs, nature has its pecking order.

And in a contest between the bald eagle, America’s national bird, and a common loon, which is featured on Canada’s dollar coin, few would bet on the latter to come out the victor.

But sometimes the underdog comes out on top, as was revealed when an eagle was found dead in the water near a dead loon chick in a Maine lake.

A necropsy revealed he was killed by a stab to the heart from a loon’s beak.

Baby loons are common prey for eagles, which are fearsome hunters.

Bald eagles are protected in the US, and typically their remains are sent to the directly to the National Eagle Repository in Colorado.

It is a crime in the US to kill an eagle, possess one or disturb its remains, except for special exemptions, such as in the use of Native American ceremonies.

Image copyright
Nat Woodruff / Department of Inland Fisheries

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