Bald Eagle – 2nd Year

Second Year Bald Eagle

I noticed a bald eagle sitting on a utility pole while Leonard and I were driving near our house. Leonard stopped the car and I got out. Usually raptors will fly when I approach too closely, but this bird allowed me to come right up to the utility pole and walk underneath him. After I took several pictures, I wanted him to fly. Pictures of eagles flying are popular with everyone. I walked back and forth under the pole and he simply watched me. I waited a few minutes. This eagle was not going anywhere. (We will not haze any animal.) Since Leonard was parked in the middle of the road and cars had to go around him I decided perhaps good judgement required that I allow the eagle to win this standoff.

A while ago I posted a picture of a third year bald eagle. This picture is of a bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) in its second year. The breast is speckled with white, while if it were a  juvenile bald eagle the breast would be uniformly dark brown. The beak of a third year immature has already turned yellow while this eagle still has a black beak. These characteristics, among others, identify the age of this specimen. Bald eagles do not develop their distinctive white head and tail until the fourth year or later. The sexes look alike, except females are larger than males. So I cannot determine the sex of this bird.

As a photographer’s model this bald eagle was not cooperative. Yet even as an immature it knows how to strike a noble pose.

This entry was posted in Birds and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Bald Eagle – 2nd Year

  1. Pingback: Golden or Bald Eagle? | The Nature Niche

  2. usermattw says:

    Funny how nature doesn’t always cooperate. :-) I guess that’s why it’s called “wild”-life. At least the bird sat still for you.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s