Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Eagle Watching

Last Sunday, while my nieces were visiting, Mom and I took them on one of our many expeditions to Lake Wilhelmina to watch the eagles. Eagles winter in this area and they are such an exciting bird to spy in the wild. It was a brisk Sunday afternoon with strong wind gusts. We bundled up and armed with cameras and binoculars we traveled to our favorite viewing spot on the northeast end of the lake. It was an amazing day!! We saw six eagles soaring above the lake all at once. Two of the birds eventually flew to a pine tree across the lake where they sat side by side and viewed the shenanigans of the remaining four. Suddenly, one of the airborne eagles paused in mid-air, suspended for several seconds with talons extended before dropping to the water so fast I could barely keep tracking it with my binoculars. The eagle hit the water with an audible whop then rose with a glint of silver in his talons. The four of us watched in awed silence. What a fantastic event to witness!

Can you see the eagle? It is at the very top of the tree closest to the center of the picture. I crept closer and closer trying to get a good shot with my limited photographic equipment. To be honest, the bird made me a bit nervous. It was really keeping a close watch on me and it kept ruffling its wings. Still, I crept closer until I got this shot.

I felt like I was standing right beneath the tree and I was closer than I've ever been to an eagle in the wild. My nieces were waiting for the eagle to attack. I was pretty much thinking along those same lines myself.

We saw quite a few ducks, cormorants and other water fowl including a kingfisher. We were lucky enough to observe the kingfisher diving for a tasty morsel several times. He completely immersed himself in the water before flying up to a stump to chow down. It truly was a wonderful day. I wish I had taken more pictures, but I was too busy watching. The picture below is from a Christmas card that my brother sent me. Beautiful, isn't it?



Blogger Pamela said...

Gorgeous yes.
And to think they were once on their way to extinction.

10:01 AM  
Anonymous Vicki said...

Just beautiful!.

About 3 years ago there was a Eagle nest on our way to church. We would see them in their nest, circling looking for food. Later I heard a teaching on how Christians are like Eagles. Was really neat. One thing I remember is that when Eagles eat something toxic they go to the highest spot they can find, spead their wings to the sun and let the sun bake the toxins out of their system. We do the same. We spread our wings before the Lord and in worship we wash the toxic stuff our of our systems.

Stepping away from the pulpit.. Next?

1:02 PM  
Anonymous Karmyn said...

I love the eagles.

My step-mother and dad live up near the San Jan Islands (NW Washington - right next to Canada). She has to be outside with her little shitzu's when they take potty breaks because if she isn't, the Eagles will swoop down and take them away for dinner.

1:27 PM  
Blogger Betty said...

Great photo. We saw a bald eagle the other day, and nearly ran off the road watching it.

3:55 PM  
Blogger Leann said...

I loved this.I see eagles all the time at my apartment.I live on the 7th floor and they fly by.God bless.

10:45 AM  
Blogger Shauna said...

Eagles are beautiful birds.

3:01 PM  
Blogger Grim Reality Girl said...

Amazing!! Love, love, love the 3rd photo especially. I want to see eagles!!!

5:23 PM  
Blogger Claudia said...

Amazing. I had an eagle fly over my car once and I just can't get over how majestic they are!! Lucky you.

10:38 AM  
Blogger Angelina said...

That sounds like one of those quietly envigorating kind of days. Eagles are so beatuful and feirce and always remind me of my brother when he was a kid. He had a deep reverence for Bald Eagles especially.

4:33 PM  
Blogger gawilli said...

That is so cool. I have never seen an Eagle in the wild. Next I am going to google cormorants. Boy I sound like a rube, huh?

8:43 PM  
Blogger LeftCoastOnlooker said...

amazing! I've never seen an eagle in nature, only in the zoo, and that was sad, to see them caged

8:45 PM  

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