Animal of the month – Bundjil, the Wedge-tailed Eagle

Wadawurrung believe Bundjil, the Wedge-tailed Eagle, is their creator spirit. Bundjil created the lands, waterways, native animals, and people. With a wingspan of 2.3 metres, you can see Bundjil soaring in the sky from a long distance away.

Wedge-tailed Eagle soaring through the sky

The majestic Wedge-tailed Eagle is Australia’s largest bird of prey. Their long, wedge-shaped tail and huge wingspan make them easy to spot. As they age, their feathers become a dark blackish-brown. These eagles live throughout Victoria in wooded and forested land and open country. Their favourite place to build a nest is somewhere up high with a good view of the surrounding area. This means they’re usually spotted nesting in the tallest tree (dead or alive!) in their territory.

Wedge-tailed Eagle perched

Wedge-tailed Eagles hunt for live prey and eat carrion, which is why you often see them near roads. They are bold hunters and can haul about half of their own body weight – talk about lifting! Sometimes, they store their kill on a branch close to their nest and come back later to eat.

These eagles mate for life. They build their nests from dead sticks and reuse them through the years. Both parents raise the chicks, and for the first few weeks after hatching, deliver food directly to the chicks’ mouths. The chicks only stay with their parents for about 11 weeks before they leave the nest. They fly off and find a new spot to live, perched high above the land.