Before I realized it, one of the other photographer’s sang out that an osprey was in a dive!
I caught her as she came back up out of the water with her prize.
She quickly turned toward her nest and the waiting fledglings.
From one end of Jordan Lake to the other, the ospreys are hauling in big bass.
Dad osprey was fishing in the Haw River, inside the riprap at the dam.
Into the flight path of the osprey a great blue heron appeared.
The osprey ignored the squawking heron and concentrated on the bass.
You can see that the raptor was struggling to get the whole fish above the water.
Dad osprey managed the lift and was up and away towards his nest. Whew!
The morning was grey and I didn’t have long to stay at the riprap.
In among the gulls cruising above the tailrace an osprey appeared.
The determined bird made a single pass over the river and banked hard.
So hard that I didn’t catch up with the osprey until it had caught its fish.
The great blue herons are putting on their breeding plumage.
They glow against the dark rocks of the riprap.
Mom Ranger and her two chicks were waiting for some fish.
Then mom Ranger saw an osprey flying in with a fish for its mate.
Mom Ranger dashed for the osprey and literally banged into it, hoping to get the osprey to drop its fish.
This is a favorite tactic of bald eagles – let the osprey catch the fish, then steal the fish for the eaglets.
The plucky osprey hung onto its prize and dashed between two trees where mom Ranger couldn’t follow it.
Mom Ranger was quite grumpy. Not everything goes the eagle’s way.
Eaglets Sky Fishing
The lower eagle is a 2-year-old that is trying to harass the 2-year-old above it into dropping the fish it has.
The ploy succeeds until a 3-year-old bald eagle shows up.
The 3-year-old missed the fish too.