Eagles

Majestic, awesome, enormous, endangered. Time's running out. The race to save the Wedge tailed eagle.

Auzzie the Eagle is more than a mascot; he's a species in trouble, struggling to survive.

In just 30 years, they could be wiped from our planet forever.

At Eagles Heritage in beautiful Margaret Rive Phil Pain fights to keep them alive.

"They're one of the greatest things that make this country and when they disappear one of the parts that make this country great will disappear with them" says Phil.

Phil looks after injured eagles. He rehabilitates them and sets them free.

In the wild these raptors are powerful beasts. Superb flyers, they can soar for hours without even working up a sweat.

These are amazing creatures, that's why we chose their name as ours. Their strength is awesome. They can have an incredible impact when they attack.

We've asked Lance Maschmedt from UWA's Physics Department to do some maths, to work out the actual power behind the blow.

It's called kinetic energy. Scientists measure it in joules and there's a formula.

Half the mass by the velocity squared. Right got it...

So, if the bird weighs about 4 kg, it slows down to about 80 km an hour on impact. That's 22m a second. That's two cricket pitches, every second.

Half times the 4 kilos, times 22m squared equal 990 joules.

If that brutal force belting into the enemy isn't enough check out the eagle's next weapon.

Razor Sharp.

Without the glove she could cut through my flesh like butter.

That's almost two tonnes of pressure just in the tips of their 8 talons.

To give you an idea that's like a Harley being squeezed into the tip of a stiletto eight times over.

In comparison, their beaks are harmless. They have less bite than a budgie...apparently!

The eagle eyes are like binoculars. Two and half times more powerful than ours.

Eagles are the worlds most efficient killers, yet these ones have been hunted for almost a century by one enemy. Humans.

You can still get a licence to shoot them dead here. We're the only country to allow that.

"If you shoot a Bald Eagle in America it's now a $325, 000 fine and 10 years in prison. Now you've got to ask why they have such heavy penalties. It's because they nearly lost them and the Wedge Tailed Eagle is headed down the same road as the Bald Eagle was 40 years ago" says Phil.

Officially, Australia's got ninety eight different animals near extinction. 35 are birds.

"The Wedge Tailed Eagle is endangered. I don't care what anyone says. Thh bottom line is we used to have 2.5 million now we've got less than 30 000 pairs left in the entire country. In any other conservation book anywhere else in the world, they'd be considered a threatened species" says Phil.

Phil reckons losing the wedge tailed eagle will be shameful, and it'll be another environmental disaster.

If you see sick, injured or orphaned native animals call the volunteer Wildcare Helpine

9474 9055.