A Stroll by Toftrees PondSeptember 19, 2009

Generally, I try to group bird photos into similar species, but the other day I had a particularly good walk by the Toftrees pond, so I thought to show the birds of the day. That was on Monday, September 14, 2009, when Sue went to her shift at PAWS and I didn't have the strength to face the cats on my own.

The walk began rather quietly, but as I was approaching the pond, I saw a hawk in the distance. I got a few distant shots and identified it as a Cooper's hawk. After I reached the pond, the Cooper's hawk flew several loops overhead.

Cooper's hawk overhead

I noticed that the great egret, which tends to hang out at the farther sides of the pond, was perched on a stump in the center of the pond.
Great egret

Shortly thereafter an osprey flew from the pond and did several loops overhead.
Osprey overhead

That, by my personal definition, was already a truly good day by the pond, but then I noticed an eagle in the distance.

The juvenile bald eagle also did a number of loops, ascending, but it slowly came closer to me. The eagle was still rather far away before it disappeared, but there's no doubt about its identification.

Juvenile bald eagle
  Definitely a good walk.

As a complement to the previous photo, two days later I photographed an adult bald eagle that flew across the center of the pond before disappearing among trees.

Adult bald eagle

That makes four bald eagles that I photographed by the Toftrees pond this autumn. In the four years previous, Sue had seen a single bald eagle, but I didn't go out that day, to my regret. This year makes up for all that.

Photo note: For the first four photos I used a Pentax K20D, with the SMC-A* 300mm lens with the Pentax 1.4x multiplier. I regret to say that my old 300mm lens is showing signs of age, and the aperture doesn't function particularly well anymore: It tends to overexpose. The final photo was taken with the Pentax K200D with the SMC 1000mm reflex lens.

My Pennsylvania bird list   |   Another Toftrees bald eagle

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