Skip to Main Content
San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance logo
San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance Library logo

Extinct Daggett's Eagle (Buteogallus daggetti) Fact Sheet: Summary

Extinct Daggett's Eagle (Buteogallus daggetti)

Archived Content

Disclaimer: Fact sheets on prehistoric (extinct) species contain archived content and are no longer being updated. At the time of publication, these pages summarized the best available science. However, some content may become outdated as scientists report new discoveries.

Extinct Daggett's Eagle (Buteogallus daggetti) Fact Sheet

Extinct Daggett's Eagle

Extinct Daggett's Eagle, Buteogallus daggetti

Image credit: © San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance. All rights reserved.

Taxonomy Physical Characteristics

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Aves

Order: Falconiformes (diurnal birds of prey; DNA studies say category may need revision)

Family: Accipitridae (hawks, eagles, kites, harriers, Old World vultures)

Genus: Buteogallus

Species: Buteogallus daggetti - Daggett's Eagle (extinct)

Body Weight
3,000 g (6.6 lb)

Body Length
64-90 cm (31 in), measured from top of head to tip of tail

Tail Length
26-32.2 cm (11 in), measured from base to tip

169-196 cm (71 in) measured as natural spread


Distribution & Status Behavior & Ecology

Relatively new species discovery; fossils from southern California and New Mexico

Open grasslands, marshlands, or savannas with some brush and ponds


Flight. Long legs likely useful for walking and steping on prey.

Social Groups

Might have fed on small mammals, crabs, amphibians, reptiles, and snakes, similar to Savannah Hawks; probably weren't scavengers


Reproduction & Development Species Highlights

Feature Facts

  • Daggett's Eagle became extinct about 13,000 years ago
  • Long legs for improved walking ability; may have looked like "an eagle on stilts"
  • May have had close associations with grazing animals of the Pleistocene

About This Fact Sheet

© 2009 San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance.


How to cite: Extinct Daggett's Eagle (Buteogallus daggetti) Fact Sheet. San Diego (CA): San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance; [accessed YYYY Mmm dd]. extinctdaggettseagle.
(note: replace YYYY Mmm dd with date accessed, e.g., 2015 Sep 10)


Disclaimer: Although San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance makes every attempt to provide accurate information, some of the facts provided may become outdated or replaced by new research findings. Questions and comments may be addressed to

SDZWA Library Links