Old 02-11-2013, 21:03   #1
TOMAHAWK9521
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Eagle Fight

I saw one of the coolest things in nature the other day. I was doing my habit trail routine on the elliptical in the gym the other morning when I saw two birds zipping across the sky. The first thing I noticed was the lead bird had a white head and tail. The trail bird was of equal size and had darker markings.

The birds seemed to mirror each other as they banked, dove, rose, turned, etc. My guess is that the large bald eagle had poached in the equally large golden eagle's AO and was now catching hell for it.

Still, despite how closely the golden harassed the bald, he couldn't quite catch him nor force him out of the area. Thus, up came Mrs. Golden Eagle. It took her a few minutes to get up to altitude and air speed and catch the other two raptors in the aerial combat.

After another couple minutes of hard flying with two pissed goldens on his six, the bald eagle leveled out flat and almost seemed to accelerate as he took up a heading towards the mountains. The golden eagles tried to keep up for a short distance and then veered back to make several victory laps over their domain.

As Mrs Golden drifted back down to the cluster of trees, Mr. Golden coasted over to a nearby pond, likely to grab a duck or small goose for chow to fill up on after such a drawn out dog fight.

It was then that I noticed the sky began to rapidly fill back up with several flocks of migratory waterfowl. I recalled how there wasn't another bird up there during the entire engagement. Well, there was one foolish little thing who probably saw only one eagle and was going to pester him. I watched him get about halfway up and then he mysteriously dropped out of the air like a rock. I guess the pattern was indeed full.

Coincidentally, I had the soundtrack from Gladiator playing on my iPod as the fracas played out. Pretty cool thing to witness.
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Old 02-11-2013, 22:35   #2
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Awesome story. Thanks for sharing.

There's a pair of nesting Eagles close to the house. I was able to grab this "hipshot" from the truck a few weeks back of one of them.

They truly are majestic to see in the wild.
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Old 02-11-2013, 22:55   #3
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I saw a bald eagle and a red tailed hawk ... a very BIG red tail hawk "dancing" over the resevior in Littleton the other day! The west side of the res was the only section that wasn't frozen, and they were in the mood for sushi!!! Quite the aerial display!!!

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Old 02-15-2013, 07:12   #4
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The ospreys here in Maryland gang up on the few bald eagles we have in the area. The most I've seen is 6 on 1, and the ospreys always win. Within about two weeks of them coming back in the spring, the bald eagles are gone.
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Old 02-15-2013, 08:09   #5
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You HAVE to see an Eagle 1st hand!

Was a PVT in the 2nd RGR Bn, we were doing Zodiac drills on the Nisqually River into the Puget Sound to hit something somewhere in typical Rgr Infantry fashion. At one point in the small channel we were navigating a bald eagle swooped our Zodiac by less than 3 feet, and continued to follow us through his AO until he either became bored with us or became satisfied we were not a threat. We would float on by his new perch, and he would swoop us again once we reached a small distance away. His wings span easily reached from one side of the Zodiac to the other, a beautiful and humbling first experience with a bald eagle. You couldn't help but to be awed.

During infils, we were trained that silence was golden, and I can't remember anyone breaking the silent (and solemn) encounter with this powerful and confident escort we picked up. SFC Rakow (Now Ret CSM) was in the boat ahead of me smacking his Squad Leaders with an oar if they lagged behind. Shalala was our boats personal "motivator", and I remember the swooping eagle even impressed them. Those eagles were a topic of conversation for a while when the NCO's weren't smoking the shit out of Pvt's for some unknown offense.

If you have never had the chance to witness their power first hand, you would be amazed. After that moment there was no doubt in my mind why they are a National Treasure. The Eagles, not Rakow or Shalala, but I to this day wouldn't want to piss them off either,,,

Thanks for sharing your story Tomahawk, it brought back a very nice flashback from when I was still able to wear size 32 UDT's,,,
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Old 02-15-2013, 10:22   #6
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It's funny you should bring up 2/75. That's where I saw my first bald eagle back in the 80's. They never got that close to us but I was amazed at how many there were in that part of the country. I'd grown up hearing about how endangered they were so I figured they could only be found in ones or twos.

Surprisingly, there is a relatively decent concentration in the outlying areas around Ft Collins.

I've had bald eagles swoop down on us while floating the North Platte River in WY. They're usually up in a tree eyeballing us, waiting for the chance to steal a trout we caught. Thieving bastards!

Equally impressive are the ospreys that haunt the Poudre, N. Platte, and Green Rivers. Last year, an osprey couple had a nest above the Poudre River right where Prospect Road crossed the river on the east end of Ft Collins.
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Old 02-15-2013, 12:54   #7
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I grew up on the Truckee and every summer all summer long my brother and I would fish up and down the river catching rainbow and german brown trout. When I was about 8 two bald eagles setup on our little stretch of the river and it was amazing to see them fly and fish. Once my brother lost a stringer of fish that he walked a little to far away from, he said it was one of the Bald Eagles. I think he forgot to dummy cord the stinger tight enough. It is kind of cool to think that one of those eagles snatched 5 or 6 fish in one shot though. (pic is almost 30 years later me with my son fishing the same spot I used to)
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Old 02-16-2013, 10:52   #8
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Eagles on the great plains.

We have lots of birds in this part of the country and all of the reports here, regarding large raptors, are dead on.

Watching eagles and hawks, while farming a 220 acre patch, they jockey for position and any prey turned up by the disc, was snatched and airborne in a heart beat.

If you have never seen it, put it on your bucket list.

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Old 03-11-2013, 10:20   #9
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I once had a Golden grab a turkey decoy from my spread. Made it about 50 yards in the air and you could see him looking at the decoy in his talons the entire time with a WTF look on his face (as expression-ed as you can see a bird of prey, I suppose). Shook it loose soon after.
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Old 03-11-2013, 11:55   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dohhunter View Post
I once had a Golden grab a turkey decoy from my spread. Made it about 50 yards in the air and you could see him looking at the decoy in his talons the entire time with a WTF look on his face (as expression-ed as you can see a bird of prey, I suppose). Shook it loose soon after.
Nature makes it hard enough on them without adding in a bogey.
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Old 03-16-2013, 21:25   #11
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A couple of springs ago my wife was on our front porch watching a new litter of rabbits about 50 feet away. There are at least two breeding pairs on our property that breed like rabbits each year. Anyway, as she is watching them a massive bald eagle swoops in and grabs one without even touching the ground and continues on its way. And I thought they only ate fish.
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Old 03-17-2013, 04:28   #12
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A couple of springs ago my wife was on our front porch watching a new litter of rabbits about 50 feet away. There are at least two breeding pairs on our property that breed like rabbits each year. Anyway, as she is watching them a massive bald eagle swoops in and grabs one without even touching the ground and continues on its way. And I thought they only ate fish.
They eat Barred Rock roosters, too.
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