The bald eagle's food chain consists of aquatic plants and diverse grass types as primary producers. Insects, mice, different sizes of fish, frogs and smaller birds occupy the primary, secondary and tertiary consumer roles. The bald eagle, having no real predator, resides at the top of its food chain.
The bald eagle is a bird of prey found in North America. Its diet consists of 70 to 90 percent fish, depending on availability. Its favorite food is the salmon. Cranes, ducks and other raptors create competition for this choice of food. However, the bald eagle also eats ducks and cranes, leaving other raptors as major competitors. The remaining 10 to 30 percent of the bald eagle's diet consists of small mammals, waterfowl and several forms of aquatic life.
Bald eagles are known as opportunistic feeders and come from the same family as the vulture. Like the vulture, they have an inclination to feed on dead animals when necessary or available. Researchers believe that this behavior may be a sign of a time when the bald eagle did not reside at the top of its food chain.
Bald eagles, despite their name, are not bald. The name is derived from an antiquated definition meaning "white headed." The bald eagle is both the national bird and national animal of the United States.