Golden Eagles are nearly the same size as Bald Eagles and, although their plumages differ, they are often confused by untrained observers

Golden Eagle Sub-adult.

Golden Eagles are permanent residents in Oregon and are much more common east of the Cascades than west. Golden Eagles are not as dependent upon aquatic prey as Bald Eagles and are found in a wider variety of habitats. In general, they are birds of open country that prey primarily upon mammals.

About 2/3’s of Golden Eagle nests in Oregon are on cliffs and 1/3 are in large trees, whereas all of the Bald Eagle nests known in the state are in large trees. In areas where aquatic and terrestrial prey are abundant, Golden and Bald Eagles will nest in close proximity to one another.

Black-tailed Jackrabbit

Nesting success of Golden Eagles east of the Cascades seems to be tied closely to the abundance of jackrabbits. When jackrabbit numbers are high, Golden Eagles produce many young and when jackrabbits are scarce, nesting failures are common.

To observe a pair of Golden Eagle’s activities during an entire nesting season, you can go to East Cascades Audubon Society’s webcam located near Sisters : starting near the end of February. As far as we know, this is the only Golden Eagle webcam in the country, all the rest are for Bald Eagles.

Current 10 Year Oregon Golden Eagle Survey