Bald Eagles at Seabeck, Wa

Eagles catching fish

Eagles catching fish

Bald Eagle Fishing

Bald Eagle Fishing

Eagle on Branch

Eagle on Branch

Eagle takeoff

Eagle takeoff

Eagles fishing crows

Eagles fishing and crows

transfer talons to beak

transfer fish talons to beak

Eagle transfer fish to beak

Eagle transfer fish to beak

I photographed at Seabeck, Wa June 21 to 24th before and after low minus tides the gathering of Bald Eagles. They congregate only when the sculpin fish are trapped in the low tides in the oyster beds. The Great Blue Herons also arrive to catch fish and the Eagles try to steal from them. I shot all of these with a Canon 1DX II and a 300 mm f2.8 Canon II lens with a 1.4 extender ( total of 420 mm) although a slightly longer lens would be helpful at times. The 1.4 extender combination seems to focus faster and is sharper than the 2x extender. This year there were fewer birds with around 10-15 birds in a small area versus as many as 50-60 last year. In the next Blog I will include some of the Great Blue Heron images and also Mt Rainier Nat Park landscapes.

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Bald Eagle nest, Reddish Egrets, Roseate Spoonbills, Burrowing Owls, SW Florida

Bald Eagle, Cape Coral,Fl

Bald Eagle, Cape Coral,Fl

Bald Eagle nest

Bald Eagle nest

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle

Reddish Egret, Ding Darling,Fl

Reddish Egret, Ding Darling,Fl

Reddish Egret, Ding Darling,Fl

Reddish Egret, Ding Darling,Fl

Reddish Egret, Ding Darling,Fl

Reddish Egret, Ding Darling,Fl

Reddish Egret, Ding Darling,Fl

Reddish Egret, Ding Darling,Fl

Burrowing Owl, Fl

Burrowing Owl, Fl

Burrowing Owl w Frog

Burrowing Owl w Frog

Burrowing owls with frog

Burrowing owls with frog

Burrowing owl, Florida

Burrowing owl, Florida

Burrowing Owl pair

Burrowing Owl pair

Roseate Spoonbill Ding Darling Preserve, Fl

Roseate Spoonbill
Ding Darling Preserve, Fl

Roseate Spoonbill Ding Darling Preserve, Fl

Roseate Spoonbill
Ding Darling Preserve, Fl

Roseate Spoonbill Ding Darling Preserve, Fl

Roseate Spoonbill
Ding Darling Preserve, Fl

 

We just returned from a trip to SW Florida including Ding Darling Preserve on Sanibel Island, Corkscrew Swamp (Audubon) near Naples, Fl, and Cape Coral, Fl where the Burrowing Owls and the Bald Eagle nest was located. Winter from Nov until March is the best time to go before some of the birds leave and the weather gets hotter and more humid. Sanibel Island (Ding Darling) is best early in the morning at sunrise and low tide. Forget the middle of the day as the light is too harsh and the birds are not very active. You need at least a 300 mm lens or 400-600 for more distant birds. Some birds are not very afraid of people so they come within 10 feet at times if you stay still but I used 420 mm most of the time. ( I used my new 300 f2.8 IS II with a 1.4 extender most of the time giving me 420mm with my Canon 7d mark II.) On the Bald Eagle nest I used the 300 with a 2x extender as I was over 150 feet away (as close as allowed with signs protecting the nest).

I will post more photos including Little Blue Heron, White Ibis, Painted Bunting, an alligator, and  a Red-Bellied Woodpecker soon in the next blog.

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