Bald Eagle Nest – Week Three

Here are a few assorted images from the chicks third week.  First up is an image of “mom” at the nest, giving her near-silent vocalization.

Week Three
Week Three

Below you get a great look at the size of the filled-crop of this chick.

Week Three
Week Three

Happy Mother’s Day!

Week Three
Week Three

Fuzzy little dinosaurs?

Week Three
Week Three

Until next time, a closeup of the chicks.

Week Three

Bald Eagle Nest – Week Two

At week two the chicks were much more mobile, able to hold their heads up for more than a couple seconds at a time.  Mom always gives them a thorough look over when arriving at the nest.

Week Two
Week Two

Here one adult vocalizes on the nest while its mate circles the river valley treetops.

Week Two
Week Two

Below is one of the melting looks that the chicks give when the adults are at the nest.  This is my favorite type of photo to capture in the nest.

Week Two
Week Two

The only visit where I observed both parents at the nest simultaneously was during my week two visit.

Week Two
Week Two

Finally, even at this early age, the chicks exercise their future flight muscles.

Week Two
Week Two

Bald Eagle Nest – Week One

Hello there.  I am ready to announce an ongoing project we have started recently.  A friend of mine informed me of a newly built Bald Eagle nest on his neighbor’s property.  With his help and that of the property owners, G & C, we discovered some viewing locations that worked well for photography while not stressing the birds too terribly.  We are keeping the location secret, but I will say it is found along the Meramec River in St. Louis County, MO.  Thanks so much to everyone involved who has helped me get these images.  It has been an incredible experience.  The chicks are now approximately five weeks old.  The images in this post were taken when the chicks were less than a week old.  I hope to continue weekly monitoring and photography until they fledge, which should take place at 10-12 weeks.

Week One
Week One

The nest is located ~ 75 feet in a large sycamore.  The reason we have such an excellent viewing angle into the nest is that the nest tree grows at the bottom of the river valley’s ridge.  We are placed at about the same height on the steep ridge, about 200-300 feet or so from the nest.  An uncomfortable place to watch, but worth it.

Week One
Week One

We have all been shocked by their speedy growth rate.  These are likely first time parents, but they have been doing an excellent job of raising these two, as far as I can tell.  😉  There is an obvious difference in size between the two chicks, that can still be see today.

Week One
Week One


Steelville Natural Bridge

Located mere feet from the Meramec River in Crawford County, I came across this natural bridge – named “Steelville NB” in Beveridge’s “Geologic Wonders and Natural Curiosities of Missouri” while visiting Zahorsky Woods.  An adjoining lot’s owner invited me to hike his trails and gave me directions to it’s location.  I’d love to go back following a heavy rain.


The Nature Photographer Does Not “Sleep-in”

It’s the day before Thanksgiving.  I was fortunate again to be able to have most of the week off of work.  This day I decided I would allow myself the uncommon treat of “sleeping in” and catching up on some rest, allow myself some down time.  I rarely do this and I think it helps to “turn off” every now and then to help slow down, to say, it is OK to not be productive.  So that was the plan, and I even stayed up pretty late.  Then, just a scant few hours after I shut my eyes, I hear a voice, far off.  Eventually I realize it was Sarah trying to convey some sort of message.  I believe she had to repeat herself no fewer than four times before I comprehended – “The weather guy is saying this may likely be one of the foggiest days in St. Louis history.”  She knows I am a sucker for a foggy day.  Because we live so far from many of the great nature scenes, more often than not, I cannot get to a destination before the typical morning ephemeration has burned down.  Figuring this would likely be the case on this particular morning, I almost said forget it, and went back to sleep.  But, as Sarah knew, I would definitely have kicked myself repeatedly if I at least did not get out and try.  If nothing else, the least I would get is a nice hike on a beautiful morning.  I chose the relatively close Castlewood State Park.  Sarah and I had recently tackled a particularly scenic trail with bluff views along the Meramec River, and I knew that a thick fog could be used well for a dramatic composition.  Here are a few images I’ve had the opportunity to process so far.  My “immortal thanks” to Sarah for waking me and to Mr. Whitman for his lines that follow.


Technical details: Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera, EF70-200mm f/4L IS USM @ 116mm, ISO 100,  f/14, 1/10 sec

To think of time – of all that retrospection,

To think of today, and the ages continued henceforward.

Have you guess’d you yourself would not continue?

Have you dreaded these earth beetles?

Have you fear’d the future would be nothing to you?


“The Beginningless Past″
Technical details: Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera, EF70-200mm f/4L IS USM @ 135mm, ISO 100,  f/13, 1/8 sec

Is today nothing? is the beginningless past nothing?

If the future is nothing they are just as surely nothing.

To think that the sun rose in the east – that men and women were flexible, real, alive – that everything was alive,

To think that you and I did not see, feel, think, nor bear our part,

To think that we are now here and bear our part.

Not a day passes, not a minute or second without an accouchement,

Not a day passes, not a minute or second without a corpse.


“To Think of Time″
Technical details: Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera, EF24-105mm f/4L IS USM @ 105mm, ISO 100,  f/14, 1/8 sec

To think the thought of death merged in the thought of materials,

To think of all these wonders of city and country, and others taking great interest in them, and we taking no interest in them.

To think how eager we are in building our houses,

To think others shall be just as eager, and we quite indifferent.

Slow-moving and black lines creep over the whole earth – they never cease – they are the burial lines,

He that was President was buried, and he that is now President shall surely be buried.

A Foggy Day in the Missouri Ozarks

“Probably if our lives were more conformed to nature, we should not need to defend ourselves against her heats and colds, but find her our constant nurse and friend, as do plants and quadrupeds.”

-Henry David Thoreau-


Technical details: Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera, EF70-200mm f/4L IS USM @ 200mm, ISO 100,  f/14, 1/8 sec

October’s Warmth

“We love to see any redness in the vegetation of the temperate zone. It is the color of colors. This plant speaks to our blood. It asks a bright sun on it to make it show to best advantage, and it must be seen at this season of the year.”

-Henry David Thoreau-

“October’s Warmth″
Technical details: Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera, EF70-200mm f/4L IS USM @ 135mm, ISO 160,  f/16, 10 sec

The Dichotomy of Autumn

Is there more of a season with dramatic ups and downs than autumn?

Good: cooling temperatures that are often a respite to a long, torrid summer

Bad: the inevitable freezing temp, rains and gloomy weather that will show up sometime in November

Good: the astounding autumnal palette that the fortunate can find, depending on where you live

Bad: picking up those leaves and cleaning gutters after the show

Good: the backing of the clocks in losing “daylight savings”

Bad: going back to school

Good: feasts of the late summer/fall harvest season

Bad: knowing that in a month or two you’ll have better luck growing a second head than finding something worthwhile of being called a “tomato”

Good: apple season!!!!

Bad: end of the baseball season

I think I’ve made my point.  No other season is packed with so many highs and lows.  I’d be hard pressed to find many complaints about spring.  Even the most diehard winter fanatics must feel the hope and renewal that warming temperatures and fresh greens that spring in spring.  Autumn will always remain a season of two faces for me.  Now I can’t wait for the winter resident birds to show up!  Come on winter!

“Autumn’s Dichotomy″
Technical details: Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera, EF24-105mm f/4L IS USM @ 32mm, ISO 100,  f/16, 1/6 sec