Ichthyophaga (true fish eagles or fishing-eagles)

Ichthyophaga (true fish eagles, also known as fishing-eagles) is a genus of two species of eagles, closely related to the sea-eagles in the genus Haliaeetus.

Distribution / Range

Both are native to southeastern Asia, from the Indian subcontinent southeast to Sulawesi.


They are smaller than the Haliaeetus eagles, though overlapping in size with the smaller species of that genus.

They share similar plumage, with grey heads grading into dull grey-brown wings and bodies, and white belly and legs.

They differ in tail colour, with Lesser Fish-eagle having a brown tail, and Grey-headed Fish-eagle having a white tail with a black terminal band, and also in size, with Lesser Fish-eagle only about half of the weight of Grey-headed Fish-eagle.



As their names suggest, both species feed largely on fish, caught mainly in freshwater on lakes and large rivers, but also occasionally in saltwater in estuaries and along coasts.

Birds of PreyThe Sport of Falconry
Grey-headed Fish Eagle (Ichthyophaga ichthyaetus)
Photo of author

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