The Golden Eagle Sounds Like a Puppy

Photo credit: Igor Shpilenok, creative commons

The golden eagle is basically a cross between a falcon and a Swiss army knife coated in Kryptonite, by which we mean it can kill anything for any reason, because fuck you. According to ornithologists (bird nerds) it is easily one of the most dangerous and formidable birds in existence. According to those same nerds, it also sounds like a complete fucking nerd. 

In popular culture the golden eagle has earned a reputation as one of the most fearsome creatures to call the sky its home thanks in part, to videos like this. Warning, the video contains excessive levels of badass.

If you don’t have time to watch the video or are worried about it causing your monitor to catch fire, it basically shows a golden eagle hunting a goat by throwing it off of a cliff. Why? Because the golden eagle just doesn’t give a fuck. There have been documented cases of these things snatching up bear cubs in full view of their 1000 pound mother and flying off into the distance never to be seen again. They’re so dangerous that pictures of their talons can give your eyes paper cuts.


In short, golden eagles are flying assholes with knives for feet and they don’t care about attacking bears. Which only makes this following fact all the more hilarious. According to bird nerds (ornithologists) who study these magnificent raptors, their cry is almost “puppy-like“. In fact, the voice of the golden eagle, which we should remind you is a bird large enough to attack a bear, is described as being “weak” and “rather pathetic”. If you think researchers are being unkind to the golden eagle, we invite you to listen to this recording of one and judge for yourself. Before you make any decisions though, we feel that it is our duty to point out that the name of the eagle in the following recording is called “Nugget”.

The thing is though, this isn’t an uncommon thing amongst eagles. For example, it’s highly likely that you’ve heard the following noise in some way shape or form whenever an eagle appeared on screen in a game, movie or TV show.

The noise is synonymous with the eagle and yet, it doesn’t belong to any member of the eagle family. The cry above, like almost every supposed recording of an eagle in media actually belongs to a red-tailed hawk. Which you can hear screaming along to its favourite death metal song below if you have the balls to press play. (Warning, video contains excessive levels of badass)

So why do film makers feel the need to dub over bald eagles, the very symbol of this country with that of a lesser bird? Well, it’s probably something to do with the fact that a bald eagle actually sounds like this.

Yes, that’s what a real bald eagle sounds like. Of course none of this changes the fact that a golden eagle could pluck our eyeballs out of our head and drag us off of a cliff, but it sure makes it seem way less scary when you realise that it’s voice sounds so stupid scientists compare it to a puppy. Actually, the fact that this bird is almost completely silent all of the time kind of makes it more scary, because now we’ll never hear it coming until it’s too late.