vendredi 8 juillet 2011

Day of the Osprey

i spent most of yesterday morning on a new bird project that fell into my lap when i opened the side door and spotted a multitude of "eagles" in the sky--or were they hawks?--landing in the old growth trees where the eagle family had been and now is gone. there were so many of them.

i rushed outside with my camera, trying desperately to capture these fast birds gliding on the cold gray air of a very overcast day; there seemed to be so many--maybe 15, 20? it was hard to tell because they kept coming from the east toward the trees, overshooting them and then circling back. i noticed that some were landing deeper in the forest, in trees that i cannot see from my porch; we are sunken down from the road and just two blocks from the great columbia river.

i actually was confused because i thought that these birds looked a lot like seagulls, with heads bent forward and a curved shaped to their wing, but they were the wrong color. also, their wingspan looked like that of a hawk at times, with that full-wide talon spread: it was especially huge when it was gliding high. but when descending, the wings would arch back like a swallow.

they were crying as they flew and after they landed in the trees. i'd heard that call before. it was a squeeky song, somewhat melodious, a sharp, throaty, whistling kind of sound
i did what i always do in such instances: i hit the web full tilt! and there they were, my osprey, exactly as i saw them flying, exactly as i heard them crying. i'll post my pictures and video... most are at a distance, but one flew right over my porch and i nailed it with my camera from underneath... big up for osprey day!

you can hear the cry in an mp3 HERE: http://www.allaboutbirds.o​ rg/guide/Osprey/id


akampher shot this in 2007 in clatskanie, oregon, around 20 miles upriver from us on the columbia! kismet!

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