Hello and Happy Monday to you all. Clearly, my least favorite day of the week as it is the first day of my five day work week.
I thought I would take a break today from my Florida pictures and share an image of a Bald Eagle, the National emblem of the United States and the animal who got me hooked on Wildlife Photography. I remember the first time I saw a bald eagle and how I was awestruck by its beauty and regal appearance. At the time all I had was a low end 70-300 mm lens and I was so fascinated by the pair of eagles that I just snapped away. My photos were not that great, but I had so much fun watching them in action. It didn't take me long to upgrade my lens to a 150-500mm and that is what I used for a very long time.
The bald eagle is not bald. The term derives from an old meaning, "white headed". Bald eagles are a large raptor with a wing span of roughly 6-7 feet. The females are roughly 25% larger than males and can weigh up to 12 lbs. Adult bald eagles have brown bodies with white heads and white tail feathers. Immature bald eagles are all brown with mottled white spots. Bald eagles don't reach full maturity until 5 years of age and once they reach full maturity, they generally pair up and mate for life. They can generally be found near areas with bodies of water such as rivers, lakes, marshes, creeks, etc as more than half of their food source consists of fish. In addition to fish, they will also enjoy snakes and small mammals. In the winter months, eagles will migrate south in order to survive. A good indicator for finding a large number of eagles in winter months is by keeping an eye on the river as they'll often congregate in areas where the water is not frozen. Winter months in the Northeast is often a great time to see large numbers of them.
With that, here is a shot I took of one of my local eagles during nesting season last April.