I can remember in the not so distance past, it was a very rare sight to see an American Bald Eagle in Connecticut. Those days are gone by and things have been reversed. I’m now surprised when I don’t see any along the river or around certain lakes and ponds.Most of my sightings are in my hometown in New Milford CT. or just a little north of here. The Housatonic River runs south thru the state, and the eagles and other birds use it as their highway from the north.Some of the birds are resident while others migrate down from the frozen lakes from the north.On the river they have a choice of fish or ducks for prey.The Common Merganser duck is in plentiful supply and makes for an easy meal.I have seen eagles pluck them right out of the water like popcorn.Being a scavenger and an opportunist, the eagle will also feed upon roadkill and other animals that didn’t make it thru the winter. Getting up before the sun rises, the temp can be quite cold. This last time out it was 5°f when I arrived at the river. I set myself up under a tree and up against the river bank, dressed in camo head to toe. After a short while the ducks that I scared away while I was getting into position return to the open water.As long I don’t make any sudden moves, I guess they think I’m part of the landscape.While waiting for an eagle to arrive the ducks can be entertaining to watch.They dive down under to catch fish, then fight over the catch.Its amazing that they swallow the fish whole and they can still get off the ground and fly!
Then as if out of thin air a very large silhouette appears in the distance. And a quick look through the view finder confirms it’s a mature Bald Eagle with its telltale bright white head and tail feathers.He gracefully swoops down to the river and the ducks scatter in all directions, no meal this time. But I’m sure as he heads down river some duck is having a really bad day.So as this winter season wears on I will find myself up on the river waiting patently for our national symbol to make an appearance.It’s always nice when spring arrives but, it’s hard to beat the quiet and serenity of winter, where eagles fly…….. Purchase Prints