Can’t Get You Out of My Head
EDIT: Check out this birdfreak.com post. The photo at the bottom shows a young woman holding a bald eagle (jealous!). I can’t get over its size. She says it weighs 12 lbs. It dwarfs her!
I don’t know what it is with me and eagles. They are like those creepy twins in The Shining. I keep seeing them everywhere. Or at least I think I do. There was that time when my fiance and I tagged along with some elite birders (they do exist) in the Adirondacks. I pointed to a passing airplane and shouted, “Look everybody! A bald eagle!”
…A dweeb among dweebs. A double dweeb.
It happened again this weekend at Baytown Nature Center. The woman at the reception desk said that a bald eagle had been spotted there recently. Her report, along with my eagerness to impress my friend Laura on her first bird outing, raised the false bald eagle sighting threat level to orange.
But who could blame me for getting excited at the sight of a large, white-headed raptor atop a dead tree? Do you see it underneath the chimney in the photo below? The white chest gives it away as NOT AN EAGLE. But it is an osprey, which in a lot of ways is even cooler than a bald eagle.
- The osprey is more widespread, existing on all continents except for Antarctica.
- Unlike the bald eagle, the osprey does its own hunting–usually for fish. The bald eagle scavenges garbage and carrion and harasses other birds for food.
- There’s just something dishonest about a bird that pretends to be bald…
- Osprey are fierce fishers! There are reports of osprey skeletons found at the bottom of lakes–with massive fish still attached to the talons.
Check out the featured photo above. How many raptors do you see in the tree? At first I only noticed the osprey (and yes, at first I also thought it was a bald eagle). When I looked at the photo, I noticed a second bird. I don’t know what species it is. I’ll be pissed if it turns out to be a bald eagle.
What about you?
- Are you a bald eagle?
- Post your additions (or objections) to my Osprey vs. Bald Eagle list.
- Help me ID the mystery raptor!