Last weekend, I’d read in a local Spokane publication that bald eagles winter in Idaho’s Lake Couer d’Alene in search of spawning Kokanee salmon. Sunday, we drove the short 30 minutes to the area and stopped at Higgins Point where the eagles are known to feed.
Armed with my Lumix camera, our dogs, and wearing warm winter coats on this cold, sunny day, we eagerly joined other eagle-watchers as we hiked along the trail, looking up and around for signs of the eagles.
After 45 minutes of seeing empty skies, we headed back to the main area. Suddenly some onlookers were cheering and clapping and out of the corner of my eye, I saw a gorgeous eagle soar just a few feet away, almost at eye-level.
Did I get the coveted close-up shot? Nope.
But I scurried and managed to capture him flying into the trees.
Somewhat disappointed, I sat down with my hubby on a nearby park bench and I got the camera ready again. Looking down on the lake, I noticed other people looking up and my hubby said he could see one in the tree.
Sure enough, there he was, king of the lake.
Looking up again, I saw another eagle soaring, this time the sun shining on his wings. Ever try to catch an eagle in flight with a 600-zoom lens? Dizzying to say the least. But I managed a few more shots.
Did You Know?
The American bald eagle lives in North America including Canada, Alaska, and the contiguous U.S. In the wild, they can live up to 20 years! Their average weight ranges from 6-14 pounds with wingspans ranging from 6 to 7.5 feet.
A local said the kokanee salmon had already run their course for the winter, so our hope of seeing flocks of them feeding was dashed. Although we only saw a total of three eagles, it was three more than I have ever seen with my own eyes.
A good day for looking up!
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