Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Prince Rupert eagles

Our ferry from Prince Rupert to Haida Gwai didn't leave till 1pm so after breakfast we went for a walk on McClymont Park Trail. We started at the ocean end of it, which happened to be at the inlet where I'd taken photos of the eagles from the bridge. There were eagles by the water again but they flew away. As we were walking along the trail I happened to look up and there was an eagle in the tree over our heads. There was nothing to brace against, and on top of that I was shooting almost straight up, but amazingly I still got some good results. The photo below is one of them. If you zoom in on the original you can even see the reflection of the forest in the eye.

A few minutes later we came across several adult eagles sitting in a tree. There were also several more juveniles chasing each other, squawking and crashing around in the trees. One of the challenges was getting the correct exposure for the white heads in the sun versus the dark body and shady foliage. I ended up shooting on manual for some of them.

Of course, when a kingfisher flew by and landed down stream in the shade I wasted a few shots before remembering to switch back to automatic exposure. Even with the big lens it was still too far away to get a good shot and as soon as I started to move closer it flew away. Some day I'll get a decent close up of these guys!

When we walked back to the inlet there were eagles down by the water again.

Occasionally you see bald eagles in Saskatchewan, but not very often. So at first we were excited when we saw them. But then we saw more and more, and soon it stopped being a big event. However, they are still magnificent birds. And the challenge changed from just getting any eagle photo to getting "good" ones.

(click to view 7 photos)
bald eagle

See also: other posts and the collection of photos from this trip.

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