Saturday, April 16, 2011

Winged drama

The skies were clearing this afternoon although the mountains are still mostly obscured by clouds. Padme the wonderdog and I took one of our regular walking routes down to the golf course where there are sweeping sky views. There were lots of starlings and an occasional robin. Then I spotted a very large bird. I figured it was a bald eagle because it was, well, large. It was circling an area right at the ridge above Puget Sound. Herons are large birds that we see in this area too but they usually don't circle and glide on the air currents. I quickly pulled my camera out of my backpack. When I scanned the sky with the camera, the bird was just gone. Maybe it spotted dinner and dove to the ground?

A couple of seconds later, the bird moved up in the sky but there were two ravens above it. For the next several minutes, three ravens dive-bombed what I now could see was probably a red-tailed hawk because of the tail and head shapes. The hawk is actually upside down and the raven above it.

The hawk landed in a tree to regroup. You can see him with wings stretched out in the lower left corner. Above is a raven diving toward the hawk.

Two ravens flushed out the hawk which then flew off.  One raven circled the area, while another perched on a branch. I didn't see a nest in the tree but there might have been one nearby. 

Just another day in the bird kingdom. Visit my Nisqually and Osprey galleries for other favorites.

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