Falcons Vs. Eagles: Key Differences You Need To Know

I believe eagles are the most powerful and symbolic birds in the world. They signify strength and power such that nations like America use the eagle as a national symbol. However, another bird is very similar to an eagle and often pitted against the eagle, and that bird is the falcon. 

The falcon is the fastest bird in the world. It is also the fastest animal globally, reaching up to 242 mph speeds. So, who wins when these two powerful birds are measured head to head? Let’s find out. 

What Is A Falcon? 

A Falcon

Falcon is an all-encompassing name for hawks in the Falconidae family. These guys are birds of prey known for their diving speeds and sharp talons. Falcons range in size, and they occur all over the world. The gyrfalcon measures about 24 inches, while the falconet measures about 6 inches. 

Falcons make their nests in holes in trees or natural ledges on cliffs. The falcon’s egg is buffy white with speckles of reddish brown. The female falcon lays about four of five eggs when she broods. A baby falcon is cared for in the nest for as long as 35 days. 

The peregrine falcon is the fastest animal in the world. When this falcon dives, it can hit speeds up to 242 mph. When the peregrine falcon cruises through the sky, it does so at 40-60 mph speeds. But when they dive, their speeds are at a breakneck 242 mph. 

The lungs and wings of the peregrine falcon play a role in how fast they can go. The lung of the falcon is built in a way that can withstand the air drag associated with diving at such high speeds. The wing of the peregrine falcon is curved and pointed at the tip. This allows the body of the bird to be very streamlined for flight. 

What Is An Eagle? 


Eagle is a name for any and many birds that belong to the family Accipitridae. An eagle is a mighty bird of prey that may occasionally resemble a vulture. However, eagles are covered in feathers, whereas vultures are not. The feet of the eagle are equipped with talons used to grip prey and hold onto them. 

Eagles don’t chase their prey aerially. This is because eagles are too weighty to pull off long chase periods. However, an eagle will surprise its prey on the ground and overwhelm them before decapitating prey. This is similar to how owls also make a kill. 

Just like pigeons, eagles are monogamous. This means that they will mate for life. They build their nests in inaccessible places where they incubate a small clutch of eggs for six to eight weeks. The young eagle will reach adult plumage in about three years. 

Falcon Vs. Eagles: Key Differences 

Falcons and Eagles are only related because they are both birds. However, that is how far their relationship goes. In terms of size, eagles are heavier than falcons, and the wingspan of eagles is much longer than falcons. 

The beaks of eagles are long and curved. On the other hand, the beaks of falcons are long, short, and pointed. Eagles are very aggressive, which makes it hard to train them. Falcons are easier to train, which is why they are used in games such as falconry. When a falcon catches its prey, it will usually kill it immediately. However, an eagle could carry its prey to its nest without killing it. Now that we know the critical differences between these two birds of prey, let us look at their differences. 

Falcon Vs. Eagle: Flight 

When it comes to size, the eagle outclasses the falcon. The eagle is a large bird of prey that can reach weights of up to 15 lbs. An eagle can stand over 3 feet tall, and the wingspan, oh, the eagle’s wingspan, is enormous. The wingspan of an eagle can reach the size of 7 feet. 7 feet! Seven feet is taller than most humans. 

Falcons are smaller than eagles. They weigh about 3-4 lbs. Sometimes, less. Falcons stand less than 2 feet tall and can have a wingspan of 3.5 feet. The gyrfalcon is the world’s largest falcon. The wingspan of a gyrfalcon can surpass 5 feet. Even though the wingspan of the gyrfalcon is quite impressive when it is placed side by side with the martial eagle(the giant eagle in the world), its wingspan doesn’t measure up. The wingspan of the martial eagle is about 8.5 feet long!

Falcon Vs. Eagle: Speed 

Speed is where the falcon has the upper hand over the eagle. However, there are some species of eagles that are known to be very fast. For example, the golden eagle can dive as fast as 200 mph. But when the golden eagle’s diving speed is placed side by side with the diving speed of a peregrine falcon, the peregrine falcon comes out tops. 

Falcon Vs. Eagle: Differences In Beak and Talon 

The Eagle has a long beak. The eagle’s beak is curved, perfect for tearing into the flesh of its catch. The talons on the feet of eagles are very long and sharp. When those talons grip prey, the prey can’t wriggle free. The eagle will carry the prey with those talons to where it wishes to kill and eat the prey. Sometimes, eagles carry prey that is heavier than them using their powerful legs and talons. 

The beak on the falcon is long and sharp. They are also pointed. The pointed beak is used to stab the prey to death. The falcon’s talons are sharp and thinner than an eagle’s. 

Falcon Vs. Eagle: Physical Defense and Senses

The eagle is enormous, so you won’t be wrong if you think it uses its size as a defense. That isn’t true, though. The eagle depends on its speed and ability. The falcon is similar to the eagle in that regard. 

Also, the eagle and falcon have a fantastic sense of sight. They can both spot prey from miles away. Their sense of smell is poor, and nothing to write about. 

Falcon Vs. Eagle: Combat 

When an eagle locates its prey, it ambushes the prey. It ambushes the prey so suddenly that the prey will have little to no reaction time. The eagle will grab the prey with its sharp and thick talons, injuring it before killing it. They may also carry the prey off or eat it while it’s alive. Eagles are truly ruthless. 

On the other hand, when a falcon spots prey, it will build up speed before using its sharp talons to ram into the prey. Imagine that you were a prey rammed into with talons by a relatively big bird going at over 240 mph! 

The ramming force will kill the prey or send it falling before the falcon uses its sharp beak and talons to finish the target. 

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