Saturday, February 13, 2016

The Eagle Has Landed

While working on a proposal for Franconia Sculpture Park, I heard a continuous calling just outside the attic windows that, to my mind, sounded like seagulls but I knew that couldn't be right. No, the high pitched call was an eagle being harassed by red tail hawks.

I do not know much about large raptors, nor specifically Bald Eagles. There were several sightings over the last four months and Betsy said there were three others at the time I photographed this one. Are they passing through, southward or northward? Do they come for an easy meal on the edge of the woods, wetlands, or lawn?

The woods has resident Red Tail Hawks -I see them scanning the edges regularly. Although I've witnessed the bald eagle and red tail hawk calmly, quietly circling together last autumn, I now see that these two raptors do not always get along.

The eagle extended its wings and squealed whenever the hawk engaged in a harassing fly over. Another hawk perched in a neighboring tree.

After forty five minutes or so, baldy finally gives in to the harassment of the hawks and moves on.

We support the red tail hawks and the regular, necessary work that they do. Yet, because bald eagles were rare in the regions of my life, I'm glad to see them here. It adds yet another level of ecological complexity to our place at the edge of the old, Big Woods.

*You can click on the pictures for much larger images.


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