My plan for the first day of November was to catch some good sunrise shots, which I did along with a few crescent moon shots. Then it was off to check out a spot where a pair of eagles hang out. Well, the eagles were there and the sunrise color was still hanging in, so I got some neat shots of the eagles with a great background. Once the sun broke the horizon I could no longer shoot from that location because I was looking right into the bright sun.
Next I headed to the other side of this marsh to look for subject matter and take advantage of the sun rising behind me. A pair of geese flew quite close to me and I got lucky and got a good sharp focus on them as they did. Later, some small flocks of geese rose off the marsh and flew by, giving me some more opportunities.
Then the subject matter kind of dried up, so I glanced across the marsh where the eagles were and got a real shock. Two adult eagles were still perched, and joined by an immature eagle in the same group of trees. As I focused on that situation something in the sky above them caught my eye: two more immature eagles and then a third one above them! This was the adult eagles’ territory, so I was surprised they didn’t chase after the young ones. Eventually two of those immature eagles landed in the tree between the adults and the other immature ones already perched nearby. The third bird left the area without perching, but still ... five eagles all in the same area is something you will see in Alaska, not in Orleans County, New York!
It was a very far shot but I got some pictures to record that event. Eventually the immature birds left the area (after some aerial conflicts). I had never seen this kind of situation with eagles in the Alabama swamp before.
A few years ago an eagle nest on the Tonawanda Wildlife Management Area had three eagles attending it. There were the two adult birds and an immature eagle that the adults were tolerating. The immature one even helped incubate the eggs and, after they hatched, helped feed the young. The next year it was only the two adults.
So, back to my November 1st adventure. After the group pictures of the eagles, the great sunrise, the perch in front of the sunrise and a bunch of geese giving me some good shots, I figured it had been a great day with the camera. However, I hate to quit photographing when the light conditions are good, so I was “trolling” along the road slowly looking for something to catch my eye. There were some late blooming flowers, some nice fall leaf colors and a great blue heron flew into the shoreline near me. I parked for awhile to see if the heron would catch a fish and possibly give me a picture of that.
As I sat there patiently waiting for him to get busy something caught my eye, off to my far left, flying over the water. It was flying straight away but seemed to be searching the water. I could tell it wasn’t an eagle, but when it turned I was dumbfounded. It was an osprey! All our local ospreys headed south long ago (September) so this guy must have been a traveler migrating from up north. He swung around a few times looking for a fish and gave me a couple decent shots before flying over to a shoreline tree to perch for awhile. Again, something unusual from Mother Nature.
It had been a great morning with some great stuff and some usual stuff. I headed home after a few fall foliage shots only to head out again in the evening in search of some more outstanding colored foliage. I wasn’t disappointed and ran across some really “glowing” trees.
That evening, when I put all those images into my computer, I couldn’t help thinking how lucky I’d been, what a great day it was in the Great Outdoors. Of course it is very seldom when Mother Nature does not inspire you, if you just take the time to look and have some patience.
This past week I had several early morning adventures as I tried to capture geese close-up in flight. The first two times I got skunked (I’m thinking the local birds have scouts out to see where I’m at!) but on the third morning I visited another area and, lo and behold, the geese just outdid themselves! I got so many great flight shots that I will be processing them for the next month.
The fall foliage colors are looking up right now. It’s not the great show we have had in years past but there is some great color out there if you go searching. The ash dieback that’s killing all the ash trees hasn’t helped, and the presence of the gypsy moth in some places didn’t help either. This past weekend was just beautiful (albeit a bit chilly!) and if you didn’t get out there on an outdoor adventure, you’d better hurry up or the show will be over!
Doug Domedion, outdoorsman and nature photographer, resides in Medina. Contact him at (585) 798-4022 or email@example.com .