Pesky Teenagers




Pesky Teenagers.
I went to Rome, Georgia and Berry College to capture a few more images of birds in flight for my lecture this next weekend in Mobile. Wow, was I surprised at what unfolded in front of me. I got to a local lake where the Eagles hunt just before sunrise. About 2 minutes or so after I arrived I could hear an Eagle calling and saw it coming over the treetops with a second Eagle in tow. I recognized, from her talon, that Ma Berry was being followed by a Juvenile (actually a sub-adult, maybe 3rd year) probably hoping he could steal a meal when she caught something. They landed in a tree on the far side of the lake, so I grabbed my gear and walked quickly around the lake. Remember I don’t run unless someone with a knife is chasing me. As I got closer the Eagles flew to the ground, the Juvi still bothering Ma, and her voicing her displeasure. I did a few images as I got closer and Ma trying to avoid the youngster, flew to a tree closer to me. The light they were in was changing quickly, shadow to light, light to shadow, so I decided to switch to Auto ISO because the shutter speed would be critical as well as depth of field for my images.
After switching trees a few times, Ma flew out over the lake in front of me, with the Juvi in tow. All of a sudden, you could see Ma had reached her limit of tolerance, she turned quickly toward the other Eagle. She caught up quickly, talons up, she went after the Juvi. She missed with her talons but did get some tail feathers with her beak. After the tug (no feathers were lost) the Juvi decided it would leave to live another day. This scene lasted about 10 seconds but the whole time I witnessed the confrontation was about 20 minutes. There I stood, by myself, smiling, thinking of what I had just seen.
As I shared the story with other photographers, a few said how neat it was and how the Eagles must “like” me. I always try to explain, it isn’t something that nature does by showing favor on someone, it is the result of learning the subjects you shoot and the light you will shoot them in, as well as learning your gear. As in any craft, you can only be as good as you prepare yourself. Pick up field guides, spend time observing, read your owner’s manual, practice, practice, practice.
Tamron SP 150-600mm Di VC USD G2 lens on a Nikon D-500, Manual Exposure mode, f8, Auto ISO, shutter speed 1/1600th of a second, Sirui N3204X tripod and PH20 Gimbal head, MindshiftGear FirstLight 20L Backpack, processed in Lightroom CC. #WithMyTamron, #TamronImageMasters, #SiruiPro, #SiruiUSA, #MindShiftGear

2 Responses to “Pesky Teenagers”

  1. Wow! That must have been awesome to watch!

  2. lilybug1960 Says:

    It was, my adrenaline was pumping as much as the Eagle’s!

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