Eagle Escapades

by Ruth Renno | Feb 1, 2024 | 0 comments

immature Bald Eagle eating a salmon
Immature Bald Eagle eating a salmon. Photo © cgering|iStock.com.

One cold, sparkling winter morning I carefully sneaked over to the bay window so as not to scare the many birds at the feeders. All was calm. The Hairy Woodpecker sat hammering away, and cute, shy Brown Creepers picked out leftover crumbs from the big walnut tree beside the feeders. The lake below had an inch or so of clear ice. From the window, we could see fish swimming beneath the ice.

Suddenly birds flew in every direction as a young eagle swooped in and hit the clear ice, flying off surprised that he couldn’t catch the fish he saw. He circled and soon spied another one. He swooped and hit the ice again. Puzzled, he slowed down and landed on the ice and sat there for awhile looking down at the fish swimming right beneath him.

By then my sister and I were so excited, everyone else gathered by the window. Seeming to understand at last, the eagle flew off and didn’t try it again that day!

Soon after that on a warmer day when Mom was outside hanging up laundry, she suddenly said, “Ruth, there is an eagle down here with a big fish.”

I hurried over to watch him. He had caught a heavy fish for his weight and size. He was flapping and struggling and finally made it to the island. He sat there ripping it apart and eating some of it, then decided to try flying again.

He managed to fly over to the bank at the lake’s edge. Eating some more of it, he then decided to take it away. He started off, almost hitting the water, and made a circle around the island’s trees, giving us a full view of his fish. It was 18-20 inches (.5 m) long. He didn’t make it over the treetops, so he just landed in one of the dead trees at the edge of the lake. There he ate most of his fish, dropping some pieces for something else to feast on.

On another occasion I was surprised to see an eagle catch a small fish, then take it out of his talons and swallow it while flying! It’s so amazing to watch God’s creation.

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