Auburn has long had one of the more unique pregame atmospheres thanks to the entrance of a golden eagle. Now, the school has announced a new member to its iconic eagle roster.

A new bird will soar over Jordan-Hare Stadium this season before the Tigers hit the field. Golden eagle “Aurea,” which made her stadium flight debut last season before the Liberty game, will join gameday veteran “Spirit,” a bald eagle, as one of two eagles that will carry on the traditional pregame flights.

Fellow golden eagle “Nova” is Auburn’s official eagle as War Eagle VII, but he has been sidelined since 2016 with a heart condition and does not fly before games. He still appears at educational shows, said Andrew Hopkins, assistant director of raptor training and education at the Southeastern Raptor Center in the College of Veterinary Medicine.

Aurea was brought to the raptor center in 2016 after she was found near Selma, Alabama, with an injury to her right wing. Auburn veterinarians brought her back to good health, but the aftermath of the injury causes her to have more drag during flights.

Which eagle will fly at each game? Even the trainers usually don’t know until an hour before kickoff.

“We will bring both eagles to the stadium and look at their game face, or demeanor, and decide which one we want to use,” Hopkins said. “Of course for games like the military appreciation game, we like to use bald eagle Spirit.”

Golden eagle Aurea, a 5-year-old female, has a 6.5-foot wingspan and weighs 7.7 pounds while, in comparison, male Nova, age 20, has a 6-foot wingspan and weighs 6.5 pounds.

“This size difference is normal because female eagles are normally about 30 percent larger than the males,” Hopkins said.