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The animal on the cover of JBoss at Work: A Practical Guide is a golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos), named for the golden feathers on the back of its neck. This large bird of prey is one of the two eagle breeds found in the United States, inhabiting parts of the West as well as Canada, Alaska, Eurasia, and northern Africa. The golden eagle makes its home in desert grasslands and above the timberline. There it can stretch its wings (7 feet across) and go for a nice swoop at 200 mph, or catch a rising mass of warm air called a thermal and spiral upward into the sky.
Golden eagles build large stick nests in trees or cliff walls. They may build multiple nests within a nesting range and alternate among them, depending on the year. Since golden eagles continually elaborate on their nests, the nests can grow quite large, reaching 8 to 10 feet across and 3 to 4 feet in depth. Both the male and female participate in the rearing of the eaglets, with the male doing most of the hunting and the female doing most of the incubating. If food is scarce, the larger of the eaglets may commit siblicide.
The young fledge when 72 to 84 days old and depend upon their parents for another 3 months. After this period they either migrate or move out of their ...