Catch your attention, did I?

Since I’m not posting for Sunday Stills this weekend as we are busy with a family gathering for the Independence Day holiday, I’m sharing for Lisa’s Bird Weekly.

Amazingly, to satisfy the prompt for Lisa’s Bird Weekly (birds starting with letter H), the scientific moniker of the American Bald Eagle is Haliaeetus leucocephalus.

Bald Eagle Soars over Lake Couer d' Aline

Terr’s actual image of Bald Eagle flying over Lake Couer D’Alene

I originally planned to only share my Anna’s Hummingbirds seen later in the post, but the story of a juvenile bald eagle is eager to be told.

Inspired By the “Journey” of an American Bald Eagle

When I moved to Nine Mile Falls, Washington (near Spokane), I expected to see a lot of Bald Eagles. I have seen a few in my own neighborhood and I’ve managed to capture some grainy photos of some. Jonesing for a way to find and photograph eagles with my own lens, I stumbled on a Facebook group, Spokane Birders, from which I am inspired daily by wonderful images of local birds and eagles.

A local woman, Diana G, who lives a short distance away, discovered a Bald Eagle’s nest visible from her backyard and has been taking incredible photographs of the adult pair and their newly hatched juvenile eagle, dubbed “Journey.” She shares her gorgeous photos of these eagles and other birds on Spokane Birders, but as her images of eagles grew in popularity due to a slew of newspaper articles and local newscasts, she created a Facebook group called Bluebell Court Eagles.

Diana has graciously given me permission to use some of her amazing photos to share more about the Bluebell Court Eagles and their “Journey!”

It starts with the Bluebell Court Eagles preparing their nest.

A Baby Eaglet is hatched in early April!

Journey Matures!

As Journey prepares to fledge, the heat is on right now in the Pacific Northwest. Temperatures are as much as 30 degrees higher than normal for late June. Many juvenile birds are fledging early and bird parents are extra vigilant (we hope)!

Videos and images of him flapping his wings and hopping to higher branches of the nest to beat the heat had us cheering him on as he strengthens his wings for his first flight. Until…

Bluebell Court Eagles ©Diana Gigler
Journey practices while Mom look on

…he disappeared from the nest! “He likely fledged,” reported Diana G. This poignant image shows mom in the nest looking in vain for Journey, and panting from the heat.

BlueBell Court Eagles Diana Gigler
Bluebell Court Eagles ©Diana Gigler

On June 28, Journey indeed fledged too soon due to the extreme heat and safely fluttered to the ground. A nearby neighbor found Journey in her backyard and reported to someone who supplied her with the contact for Birds of Prey Northwest in St Maries, Idaho, near Coeur D’Alene.

Bluebell Court Eagles ©Diana Gigler
I’m safe in the loving hands of Birds of Prey NW

A volunteer reported they rescued Journey and successfully rehydrated him and intend to care for him until he can fly back to the nest next week.

Journey’s journey continues…please stay tuned.

More About Birds of Prey Northwest

This 28-year old non-profit is dedicated to rescuing and releasing birds of prey here in the Northwest. The organization received many donations as a result of following Journey’s story on Facebook. An even more incredible story is the how the talents of its staff rescued and rehabilitated Beauty, a bald eagle that was shot in Alaska and left for dead. The gunshot wound destroyed her upper beak. Not to be deterred, the talented staff used science and technology to create a 3-D printed beak used as a prosthesis to save Beauty from a senseless fate.

Here is Beauty’s story…better get a tissue handy! Read here HOW SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, AND A 3D-PRINTED BEAK RESCUED A BALD EAGLE.

I’m not kidding when I learned this organization is thee place for rescuing birds of prey!

Why the American Bald Eagle Symbolizes Freedom

Color Planet Bald Eagle 4th of July
Colored by me via ColorPlanet

The U.S. Bald eagle, (Haliaeetus leucocephalus), is the only eagle solely native to North America, and the national bird of the United States.

The bald eagle was chosen June 20, 1782 as the emblem of the United States of America, because of its long life, great strength and majestic looks, and also because it was then believed to exist only on this continent. The eagle represents freedom.


“The power and autonomy of the eagle in the air makes it a symbol of unrestrained freedom.”

Elizabeth Atwood Lawrence, a professor of veterinary medicine and anthropology at Tufts University
Freedom quote Bluebell Court Eagles ©Diana Gigler
original image ©Diana Gigler

Freedom quotes are shared for Marsha’s Writers Quotes Wednesdays. I will be hosting WQW on July 7 while Marsha takes care of some business! Next week’s theme is Writers’ Choice or Culture.

Small But Also Mighty

Annas Hummingbirds are typically found in the Western US and migrate South in cold winter months. My hummer families lived in our former Sacramento home all year ’round.

These first two Annas Hummingbird pictures were taken at my Dad’s home in the Sierra Nevada Foothills.

FLoating hummingbird
Floating to the feeder
Annas Hummingbird
All mine!
Male Allen Hummingbird
This perched hummingbird nested in our California Redwood Trees in Sacramento. Sharing for Becky B’s July Squares: Trees

“H” is also for HERO, recognizing citizens and volunteers who care for our creatures during extreme weather conditions, injury and beyond. And as we celebrate US Independence Day, please remember those who gave their lives in service to our country. Thank you to those who are serving now.

Are you crazy about eagles? Visit Tofino Photography. His images of eagles are a sight to behold.

Remember, Sunday Stills takes a one week break on July 4th. Won’t you join me as I host Writers’ Quotes Wednesday on July 7th as I stand in for Marsha at Always Write? There I will share all the Sunday Stills links from The Great Outdoors! We’ll be back on July 11 with the Sunday Stills theme of “Under the Trees.”

Stay safe and cool!

Bitmoji Birding

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61 thoughts on “Bird Weekly: “H” is for Hummingbird and Haliaeetus Lucocephalus

  1. A very interesting post Terri and thank you for the shout out!
    This recent heat wave has taken a unknown toll on many animals. The shooting of that Eagle in Alaska is criminal! I’ve heard of many carcasses being found with their talons cut off. There is a huge black market for their feathers and talons. They are used for ceremonial reasons.
    These organizations that rescue these poor injured creatures should be held high in praise!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Quite welcome, Wayne as I love Romeo and his friends in Tofino Bay. We had a cooler morning here, 60s rather than 70s at 6:00am, but still hot. Nature will quickly heal herself if we can just get out of her way a little! Stay cool!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. yes,Lytton a town of 1000 is lost. Two confirmed dead. If I can remember……… this mornings news said a young fellow saw his two parents electrocuted right in front of him! For some strange reason the hydro line going into their house pulled out and fell on top of them!
        Strange times….

        Liked by 1 person

  2. What a fascinating post. There is something about the iconic bald eagle–the free-spirited flight, the daunting confidence, I felt it all over again. Do tell us how Journey does. What a scary story and I’m glad he seems to be doing well.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. oh I love this post, and how perfect considering one of my prequels included a juvenile American Bald Eagle too 🙂

    and as for your Hummingbird #TreeSquare, well that’s just plain gorgeous. Wonderful to have you part of Squares again.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Becky. Seeing Journey’s story play out in our new neighborhood has been an emotional rollercoaster. Too many baby birds fledged too soon! Still very hot here, but the mornings are cooler. Glad you liked the hummer–I miss the little guys! Now that you have linked to another challenge, please join me for #WQWWC this Wednesday or later in the week with a tree quote 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes must be so tough to see how the heat is affecting local wildlife, and thanks so much for the heads up about #WQWWC. I will do my best too 🙂 I think I have a wordless for next week, but maybe the week after. I will check what i have scheduled as would be lovely to link with you

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Interesting post and great pictures, Terri. I have had a hard time getting decent photos of bald eagles too when I’ve traveled to areas they are known to congregate. Oh well… I hope your local birders group will allow you to get the results you are looking for! I love your pic of the hummer sitting in the tree.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Wow, both for the eagle stories and images and also for your hummer images! I love the “All Mine!” image, showing all the details and colors that we don’t always see when they are flitting around.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hi, Terri – I am incredibly grateful for organizations that rescue and release wildlife. We have a similar organization nearby that takes in all forms of wildlife but specializes in bears and ruptures. They too do amazing work!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. It’s great to see you out on a Friday! Wonderful post! Who knew the American Bald Eagle started with an ‘H? ‘ (Not me.) The pictures are fabulous and I was happy to hear a good ending for the early fledgling. And I love your hummingbirds! My Anna’s stay year around too, and come to feed in my backyard daily. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was lucky to research the bald eagles Latin name and there it was–kismet! Some stories just need to be told, Susanne! Good for your Annas, I hope to attract some next year. I saw one, but with no grass or shade, even with a feeder, the birds think it’s no-man’s land. LOL!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I love that you told the story of Journey in this blog! Quite genius to use the scientific name to get through the “H” bird. I absolutely love them and great shot in flight. Your friends photos are really great too! Now, your hummers and extraordinary. I’ve never been that close to a hummer and all my decent photos were captured in the Las Vegas area. We have a Ruby-throated hummingbird, but I have yet to get a photo of it. SAD! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Lisa! I’d been planning a simple hummer post but everything started happening with Journey. Plus Marsha’s WQW theme “freedom,”…it all worked out. I was very close to the hummers and had zoom on my Lumix. Glad you enjoyed it. 😁

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Amazing photos from Diana G., Terri. How awesome to see Journey’s journey and I’m glad he’s being cared for until he can fly away. We love our Pacific NW eagles. And our little hummingbirds, who are equally fierce! Have fun with family and have a lovely weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Diana 🙂 Yes we do love our eagles and other birds of prey–so majestic! I miss my little hummers and I hope to attract some next year when we have shade and a few trees. I hope you enjoy a cool, relaxing weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Terri this is such a wonderful post! The story of the eagle is amazing. And the hummingbird photos are super. We have hummers who come to a feeder we on a tree, outside the kitchen window. I know you have to be super fast to catch them and take a photo. Yours are lovely.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Great story about the eagles. I hope they come through the hot weather OK. It’s fun to know about a nest and follow the chick’s development. I hope you get that opportunity through the birders group there.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re welcome, Terri! No, I haven’t heard of birds leaving their nest too early, but my post next week features a baby robin who left early–twice.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. Terri, all your bird pictures are fabulous! Wow! The modified one really caught my eye at the beginning. Thank you so much for hosting WQWWC this Wednesday. It should be lots of fun. 🙂 I linked this great post to my announcement for tomorrow. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Marsha. I can’t claim the eagles as my own except the color planet one. Looking forward to hosting WQW! Hope you are enjoying your Independence day. We’re just working around the house. There was a wildfire 2 miles from us so we stayed home. All contained but scary.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Very scary. We are having beautifully cool weather. Had a neighborhood 4th party. Lots of fun! Worked on Squares and LAPC. Got three or four done. I’m super sleepy now.

        Liked by 1 person

  13. Thank you for sharing the amazing story of Journey. I’m glad that she was rescued. And I’m even more glad that they were able to rescue to the one who was shot and left for dead! Prosthetic beak was an amazing rescue feat. I loved your hummingbird pictures too. Great shots!

    Liked by 2 people

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