Another Raptor, This Time A Juvenile Eagle

After photographing the Red-shouldered Hawk in my previous post, I got lucky a few hours later with another raptor passing over me in the late morning sun.


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Bald Eagle (juvenile/immature, approx. 2 years old)


This Bald Eagle is approximately two years old.


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Bald Eagle (juvenile/immature, approx. 2 years old)


The majestic Bald Eagle does not attain its adult plumage with the prominent pure white head, pure white tail, bright yellow beak, and dark brown body until it is 5 years old.


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Bald Eagle (juvenile/immature, approx. 2 years old)


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Bald Eagle (juvenile/immature, approx. 2 years old)


Immature Eagles are often mistaken for hawks or vultures because of their dark and mottled coloring.


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Bald Eagle (juvenile/immature, approx. 2 years old)


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Bald Eagle (juvenile/immature, approx. 2 years old)


Suddenly this beauty went into circling above me, giving me several gorgeous photo opportunities with the sun backlighting the Eagle’s wingspan and tail’s feathers.  Here’s the two I loved the most.


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Bald Eagle (juvenile/immature, approx. 2 years old)


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Bald Eagle (juvenile/immature, approx. two years old)


No matter its age or the hundreds of Eagles I’ve seen over the years, it is always a thrill to see another one!



31 thoughts on “Another Raptor, This Time A Juvenile Eagle

  1. Great captures of a majestic juvenile Donna! It is interesting that birds that take between 4 to 6 years to mature to adult plumage are the most intelligent and have the more complex family structure similar to our own, as we take may years to mature also. This may be because the birds that have the longest training period learn skills and techniques and family order from one on one experience with parents and family members with greater complexity to other birds. Our raptors, magpies, ravens, bowerbirds and lyrebirds are examples of birds that have exceptional abilities and longer maturing ages.

    • Thank you, Reed! Wouldn’t that be special?!! 😉 I have seen a pair of adult Eagles at one time and a pair of juveniles at one time. There’s a family here somewhere on the lake. 🙂

  2. Fantastic shots! Apparently, you must be in an excellent location for bird traffic. You’ve picked the right place to sit your RV. The bottom two shots are my favorites. 😎

  3. I think you gave me a positive ID for the juvenile bald eagle I spotted at one of the refuges on our trip. Your images are so sharp it’s far easier to check out ID. I’d look it up, but I’m getting far too sleepy. Trying desperately to catch up now that I seem to have LR straightened out. In addition to restarting, the solution that presented itself was a popup menu I hadn’t encountered previously which gave me a choice of catalogues to use. I picked an older one and things (so far— knock on wood) seem to be working just fine!

    • Yay, on your juvenile Bald Eagle sighting! Most people will see a juvenile eagle and think they’re seeing a vulture or hawk. Many do not know it takes five years for an Eagle to reach adult plumage. The juveniles transform each year, and have white feathers everywhere they don’t at adult, lol. Confusing for sure at times on ‘what bird is that?’

      I use the internet when IDing sometimes, but I love my Crossly Guide ID books, I have the ‘Raptors’ and ‘Eastern Birds’ books. Lots of photos on one page of each bird, really really helpful, especially for all juvenile birds that confuse me every day, lol.

      • My favorite ‘real’ book (as opposed to digital) is Sibley’s. Eric has it on his iPad, but I haven’t managed to (gotten around to) downloading it on my tablet. I really like that one (either version). Might have to check out the ones you’re suggesting.

        I dug into quite a bit on bald eagle lore when I lived not far from a nest I discovered. Never had a really good look at it from down on the road on the other side of the river, but I had glimpses of 3 batches of fledging eaglets. That was before I moved. Timing was everything for catching sight of any activity in the nest. We seem to have (or had -in the old neighborhood) an explosion of bald eagles. It’s always fun to catch sight of them.

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