Tuesday, February 28, 2012


Yesterday was a good day for me.  I was able to get my "raptor fix", both here at home and by going to visit my dear friend, who is associated with the Northern Illinois Raptor Center.  She boards two education birds on her property and allows me to get in a little handling time with them.   As much as I miss being involved with Raptor Rehab and Education, somehow my current commitments are not allowing time for it.

But first, for here at home.  I got up a little earlier yesterday morning.  The sun was rising and the sky was clear.  We have been having temperatures in the 40's , so, as I have mentioned before, we have open water on our lake.  A new eagle that I haven't seen this year landed in a tree in the back with a huge fish and began to dine (judging from the amount of white on her head and tail, I would guess her to be 4 or 5 years old).  It has only been in the last few years that we have had eagles in our area at all.  Except for one pair of adult eagles nesting two lakes down, we have had primarily transient juvenile eagles.  I am hoping that soon, as they mature, we will have a permanent population of them up here.  They are wonderful birds to watch.  So bear with me ... the eagle pictures are taken with my telephoto lens and are not as clear as I would like.  With the sun being behind my subject I end up with silhouettes.  I think you will get the gist anyway ...

Arriving with Breakfast ...

When finished she leaves, satisfied for the moment

Their wing span is breath taking ...

The next two birds , compliments of the NIRC are an
 American Kestrel (male) and a Barred Owl.  The Kestrel had an injured left wing and the Barred Owl is imprinted on humans, thus they were unable to be released back into the wild after their rehabilitation.

The American Kestrel shown here with Barb so you can see the size of the bird and the methods of handling.  The male and female Kestrel are one of only two raptor species that have different coloring.

The male and female Barred Owl can only be told apart by their size or a blood speciman.  The females in the Raptor world are bigger (Yes!)

Not every day can be this exciting (at least to me) so it makes me feel like I want to share it with you ... Hope you enjoyed.


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