In March 2013 I traveled to Alaska with the sole intent of photographing Bald Eagles. I had photographed Bald Eagles in the past, but those occasions where random sightings. Bald Eagles are thriving in Alaska. At times there were well over 100 eagles in sight.
The Bald Eagle is the national bird of the United States and is the only eagle unique to North America. In addition to feeding on fish they are also scavengers who will feed on carcasses. These impressive raptors have a typical wing-span of 80 inches and weigh about 9.5 pounds.
What impressed me most was the acrobatic moves in flight as you can see in the following photos. When making sharp turns they would fly vertically or even nearly upside-down. When descending they spread their wings as if using a parachute.
Most of the photography was done from a boat using a 70-200mm lens as eagles flew by at close range to snatch fish from the surface of the water. As the eagles approached the water to capture a fish, they would extend their talons forward in preparation to grab their prey.
Juvenile bald eaglesdo not acquire their signature white head and tail feathers until they are about five years of age.
One morning I photographed from land where eagles congregated. For these photos I was able to use my 500mm lens.
In March the snow covered mountains provided beautiful backdrops for eagle photos.
As a courtship ritual, eagles will lock onto each others talons and cartwheel towards earth, disengaging in time to soar away.
To see more of my photography, please go tohttp://dongettywildlifephotography.com/
I hope you enjoyed these images from my Alaska Bald Eagle “shoot”.