Eagle Love At Sunrise

In addition to birds and wildlife, I’m forever taking a sunrise or sunset photo.  (I need to make a folder of just them someday!)  This morning I saw Marshy Creek had iced-over during the night (doesn’t happen very often), and the sunlight was starting to reflect on it.  It was time to get on the road to work, so I quickly took a couple shots off my balcony and got back inside.  Brrrrr!!!!  I should have put on my coat!

Sunrise over Marshy Creek January 8, 2014

Sunrise over Marshy Creek January 8, 2014

I packed up, bundled up, and headed down to my car.  Got it started and decided to take a couple more sunrise photos from the berm while my car warmed up.  🙂

Sunrise from our berm

Sunrise from our berm

After snapping the above shot, my eye caught a large dark bird silhouette out over the above right channel marker.  Eagle?  I ran (yes, ran!) back to my car to get my telephoto lens, then back to the berm.  Snapped the first photo below of the Eagle and then saw a second one.  It was a pair of Bald Eagles flying around together.  Awesome!  It is that time for Bald Eagles around the Chesapeake Bay to be courting and preparing their nest, as the females will be laying their eggs by late January/early February.  I’ve been watching and waiting to catch a glimpse of a pair bonding!

I didn’t know if any photos would turn out from a distance with the low light, my camera was not liking the cold, so I just snapped away best I could as I watched the pair play and chase each other, sometimes flying in unison, and every so often one would make direct contact and bump the other.  That’s a little love tap.  🙂

The pair never did come close to me, so I had to crop a bit much.  Still I hope you enjoy this series of a little Eagle love at sunrise in silhouette.

American Bald Eagle

American Bald Eagle

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It only lasted about six minutes, and then one Eagle flew down to the ice and landed.  The second one swooped down for another love tap (that shot was disappointingly blurry) and then landed a bit of a distance from the first one on the shoreline.

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Do you see the two Eagles at opposite sides of the photo?

What was that about?  Guess they were done playing.  I thought it was kind of funny.  Not even a minute passed when the Eagle on the ice took flight again, flying low past the shoreline Eagle, and then stayed low across the ice and subsequently the Kent Narrows Channel water, heading directly to Kent Island.

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The second Eagle pondered a moment and then took off to follow his/her love!

The pair didn’t actually mate in the air, which that sighting is quite awesome to watch, I’ve seen it several times.  The pair will fly up high, make contact & lock talons together, and then mate while cartwheeling in a freefall to the ground, breaking lose just before ground contact.  It’ll make you hold your breath as you watch them freefall!

Today’s little Eagle love at sunrise had me smiling all the way to work.  Guess that’s the romantic in me, lol.  I hope it gave you a little smile too!  🙂

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