I think that I am finally getting the hang of the formatting and the set-up issues for blogging with this platform. I also think that the eagle has a channel catfish that she just lifted (literally) from a suburban fish pond in metropolitan Phoenix.
I even think that I know the what the locals call her, and it’s Misty.
Actually I know of her and her mate Bandit because I am a member of several photography groups on FB. These days the private groups are about all that is good over there. Having seen the pictures of her swooping down on the fish pond I had a pretty good idea where the sushi bar was. It’s only a mile or two from my son’s townhome in Scottsdale. I’ve always wanted to try and get a shot of one of them but I’ve never taken the time to be there near dawn when they seem to be most active.
On Saturday both grandkids were at soccer games so off we went, camera gear included. The granddaughter’s game happened to be in the same complex with the fish pond and I thought about the eagles when we pulled up. My long lens was ready for some soccer action. When the game was over I was in a line to pull out of the parking lot when I saw a bird land on top of a power pole about a hundred and fifty feet away. The bird was back lit and hard to see clearly. I wondered for a second and then reached around and hauled my heavy backpack over the seat to grab my camera. Sure enough, and sure it was a Bald Eagle, possibly one of the pair. The Saturday afternoon Sushi fest was on.
Thankfully, the light where I was waiting is timed poorly for the cross street and there was no one behind me. Crossing over to the through lane was easy and I pulled off on the side of the road just across the street.
I posted these images in the FB group and the photographer who knows them best verified that indeed this is Misty.
I don’t think these birds migrate. I think I know why. Here you have an n apex predator that has the run of a rather significant green belt / flood control area, and very high pines only a mile or two away for nesting. Couple that with the sushi bar that is stocked with 5 different types of fish and you have a pretty compelling reason for the family to hang around.
Earlier this spring the pair produced one offspring, and it will be interesting to see how it will fare in the environment.
Here she is, up close and personal courtesy of a lens and sensor combo that makes it equivalent to a 600 mm telephoto. I wanted to stay and try to catch her in flight but Mrs had just left before me taking two very young ins home to babysit. Not wanting to leave her overwhelmed I reluctantly loaded up my gear promising myself that I’d be back.
Click on any image to enlarge.