What You Must Know About The Eagle’s Vision

What You Must Know About The Eagle’s Vision

The bald eagle Iris is a pale-yellow color, much lighter than human eyes. Juvenile bald eagle eyes are brown and gradually lighten as they mature. Both eagles and humans have a white area called the sclera, but the eagles is hidden below the eyelid. The human eye is oval while the eagle’s eye is round. 

     Eagles have among the best eyesight in the animal kingdom.  The eagle’s eyes are estimated to be 4 to 8 times more powerful than the human eyesight. The eagle has 20/5 vision while humans have 20/20. 

    Eagles’ sharp eyesight, which includes color vision, makes them superb hunters.  They spot prey from great distances and can dive toward the ground at 125 to 200 miles per hour.

     There are 2 features of an eagle eye that give him such sharp vision. One is the retina, and the other is the fovea.

Eagles use both monocular and binocular vision, meaning they can use they eyes independently or together depending on what they are looking at.

An eagle eye has two focal points (called “fovea” [singular] or “foveae” [plural]) one of which looks forward and the other to the side at about a 45-degree angle. These two foveae allow eagles to see straight ahead and to the side simultaneously. The fovea at 45 degrees is used to view things at long distances. An eagle can see something the size of a rabbit at more than three miles away.

    The eagles can distinguish more colors than humans. They can also see in the UV range of light, allowing them to see the urine trail of prey. The have an upper and lower eyelid, like ours, as well as a translucent nictitating membrane, often called the “third eyelid”. The nictitating membrane closes horizontally across the eye and provides moisture, protection and cleans the eye

    Eagles are diurnal predators who mainly hunt during the day and are typically inactive at night. However, wildlife cameras have shown adult eagles feeding on carrion and even bringing food back to the nest at night.

An eagle’s eyes are rotated towards the front of the head and are angled 30 degrees from the midline of the face. This allows them to have a 340-degree field of vision. Their peripheral vision is quite impressive, which greatly assists these predatory birds.