Copyright ©2018 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Last year we had a pair of American Bald Eagles make a nest in a Redwood tree which is located in the front yard of an Elementary School right here in Silicon Valley. It was very exciting news. We hoped they’d return this year. Not only did they return to their nest they’ve had two chicks!
Myself and several friends had made a couple of trips over to see and photograph them, 2 weeks ago we met there again. When I pulled up there were many photographers there, and they were quickly changing positions, and pointing up, one friend already there motioned me to hurry. There was something exciting happening. I quickly parked, got out of the car then went to get my camera out of the back of my car. The Female was coming in and she had dinner! I had to act fast she was flying low, fast, and being dogged by crows who squawked at her the whole time.
There was a row of trees blocking my view, so I ducked down, and sans tripod got her in my viewfinder and fired off three rapid shots then I lost her in the trees. Since I was hand-holding my 200-500mm lens I wobble all over the place and my position of ducking and shooting wasn’t stable. I didn’t have much hope for having a decent shot. My rig weighs just a smidge under 8 pounds (4kg). I’ve never had any arm strength. 😥 Two of the images were nothing but a blurry blob in the frame, but one was worth saving for myself. It’s not print quality, but I thought I show you it anyway because you can tell what birds they are, and what’s happening.
Mama Eagle scored a whole duck for dinner. A whole duck! There were 3 crows dogging her, but I only got one in the frame with her. See the duck?
Mama stayed near the nest watching the Eaglets eat for sometime, and the Eaglets would pop their heads up from time to time looking for their parents.
Mama decided it was time for another flight. I photographed her just as she left the branch she was on. I love this shot! Her wings are enormous! I barely fit all of her in my frame.
Dad was nearby on a branch higher up keeping watch, but after Mama left and the chicks were fed he thought it was safe for him to come down and clean off his beak.
He cleaned it by rubbing and wiping it on that branch. Under his back end below the branch is the nest. You can just make out a chick in there. Dad has lost all his beautiful white tail feathers! I hope they grow back.
We stayed watching and photographing them until sundown when we lost the good light. I have more images I want to share of the adults, but again I’ll wait for a rainy day, by then I may a few of the Chicks as Fledglings.
Pets Update: I finally took a photo of Box, and someone cough! (Dan) reminded me that I haven’t shared a photo of Diva Dog in sometime. Imagonna fix that for ya. 🙂 I had Yosemite Sam pop into my head when I heard that last sentence in my head. 😜
Box is still shy: He loves to hide in the back corners, and he loves his hay bag. I got him at a good time munching on hay.
…and for Dan, Diva Dog- Yesterday was in the 80’s and today is supposed to be 89°F. Early summer? When it’s hot she likes to lay on the cool wood floor in the entry hall, or on our bathroom floor’s Travertine tiles. She wouldn’t pose for me. Too hot! I’m sorry you can’t see her cute neckerchief.
It’s supposed to cool down mid week. I hope you’re not too hot or cold, and I hope you’re all having a good week, and great day!
Nikon D810| Nikkor 200-500mm @500mm| SanDisk Digital Film| PS CC 2018
more to come…