Posts Tagged ‘bald eagle’

Morning Surprise!

I opened the front door to see if it was still raining …

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and there stood a bald eagle in the field across the highway.

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I couldn’t see what it was eating on.

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It didn’t allow three crows to share in its meal.

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It had to be a mammal with a rib cage like that.

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My husband estimated the distance to the eagle to be about 125 yards. I went back to the front door to take more pictures, and it had flown.

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It wasn’t long before the eagle returned

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… and another came for the deer meal too.

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The light rain had quit.

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 The eagle on the right pulled on a fresh deer skin

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that someone had apparently dumped.

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The eagle in the foreground looks to be a immature by its dingy-looking head.

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This picture shows the remaining mottling on the underside of the younger one, and that its tail isn’t completely white yet.

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They will return to feed as long as food remains. Others might come too.

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A Short Afternoon Hike

I knew it was going to be a good outing when almost-adult bald eagle flew right over the truck. Adult eagles are 4-5 years old before they get their white head and tail. This eagle had a few brown feathers in its tail. I was so excited, I didn’t check its head.

The woods at Stone Face definitely changed since our last trip. It was so green.

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 Recent rains left a cheerful creek.

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 Jack-in-the-pulpit (Arisaema atrorubens) bloomed among all the greens.

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 The colors and lines of the hood created an artistic design.

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  Mayapples (Podophyllum peltatum) grew in large patches.

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Only the plants with two leaves bloom.

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 The flower blooms under the umbrella of leaves.

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Knowing that gemmed satyrs aren’t a tolerant butterfly, I had to stay where I was and zoom in for this picture.

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After such a pleasant hike, we had one more surprise on the way home … a wild turkey walked across the road and into a field.

An Eagle Visit

I photographed the foxes in our yard for the first time this year on April 15. I was so excited, I thought it would make a special day even more special to visit the bald eagle nest too.

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 The day was cloudy and windy.  I don’t like to get too close to the nest and possibly stress the parents.

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Obviously, the one on the left is young … and bigger than I expected.

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  There’s such a feeling to be in the presence of eagles.

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This picture shows 3 in the nest. From a couple of my other pictures, there’s at least 2 eaglets.

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This tree lost a whole trunk 3 or 4 years ago. Eagles will use the same nest every year until something happens to the tree. I do hope that time is a long way away.

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So I had my day with both the foxes and the eagles. Now you can to.

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Backyard Eagle Encounter

I was sitting at the computer by the picture window that looks out over our backyard. An eagle circled and went back over the strip pit. Another adult bald eagle did the same. I called my mother to “nanner nanner.” One eagle returned. I got off the phone, grabbed my camera and hurried outside.

The other eagle returned too. They circled here and there, heading north and returning, back and forth over the old strip pit behind the house and returning. A strong south wind blew, blowing cumulus clouds to the north, speeding the eagles’ flight and complicating picture-taking.

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They’d disappear and return. I’d occasionally hear one of their  eek” calls. I lost concept of time. Nothing but waiting for them,  and watching them, trying to get pictures. Then a 3rd adult eagle joined them. They didn’t sound to pleased about that. Heard occasional “eeeek” calls.

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I did pause occasionally to breathe. They were closer than they look in the pictures. If I zoomed in too much I couldn’t find them before they were too far off. The back and forth behind the strip pit, and flights to the north and back continued.

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Obviously, the first 2 were a mated pair and the third an intruder. This got me wondering when they mate in southern Illinois and lay their eggs. Big birds obviously take longer to reach maturity.

Great horned owls begin nesting here in southern Illinois at the end of January. Bald eagles incubate their eggs 35 days, and the eaglets fly at 70-75 days. That’s roughly over 3 months.  I couldn’t find the information I wanted online. I’ll file these questions in my brain somewhere and maybe will learn the answers sometime.