I'm an avid birder and nature photographer wishing to share some of my sightings & images taken while out in the "wilds" of Cape Ann and surrounding New England countryside. More images can be found on my web site at New England Birds Plus Enjoy, Phil Brown

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Sunday, February 13, 2011

Eagles, Owls & Others - Feb. 13, 2011

A warm Sunday, something we haven't seen in several weeks, of course warm is a relative term... 32 degrees... which is loads warmer than the recent 10 - 20 degree temps we've been dealing with.

An early stop by two of the Ipswich Screech Owls found the Corliss bird sitting out and this gray morph enjoying the few early rays of sun we had today.

A brief video with a couple of Cardinals chipping in the background.

Eastern Screech Owl - Ipswich, MA - Feb. 13, 2011 from Phil Brown on Vimeo.
A stop by this very accommodating Screech Owls roost found it napping in the early morning light.

I left Ipswich with hopes of a repeat of yesterday's Eagle activity around Deer Island in Amesbury. Things looked pretty dim on arrival but picked up a few hours later. The Ring-necked Duck below entertained me while I waited for the Eagles to put in an appearance.

A Seal came up quite close to the duck, I'm guessing it was looking for breakfast but the duck was much to fast.

and the Seal had to look elsewhere for it'meal.

The Great Blue Heron that's wintering in the area put in an appearance early in the day and squawked at the Bald Eagles several times when they ventured to close for the Herons comfort.

An adult male Peregrine Falcon strafed the Eagles a few times as if to say buzz off this is my turf. The Eagles headed up river but soon returned to their favorite perches as did the Falcon. It perched in the middle of the Rte 95 bridge for a few hours during my visit. (You'll have to take my word that it's a Peregrine, it was quite distant)

Shortly after my arrival several Crows gave chase to a Common Raven over Eagle island. The size difference between the two can be seen quite well in this image as the Crow nips at the Ravens tail.

and again here with a shot of the Raven from below.

Oh yeah.... The Eagles... they did show up.... though it was a few hours later.... this was the best shot of the day.

and the same bird here a few seconds later

The catfish these birds are after have no hope of surviving an encounter with these talons.

as this fish soon learned....

One of the young Eagles was banded. I'll be sending this info off to MA Wildlife's Tom French to see where this youngster was raised.

another shot of the banded Eagle

A sure sign of springs arrival... The Red Sox are in training camp and the signs of the love we have for the Evil Empire can be seen most anywhere if one looks closely...:)

Finally a stop at the boat ramp on the Salisbury Beach State Reservation found this Savannah Sparrow eeking  out a living among the salt marsh grasses that washed up on the ramp.