The bald eagle was lined up, eyes steady on the fish.
He had dropped his feet and was ready to flare his talons.
I was hoping for a great photo of a fish catch.
And then …
The great blue heron squawked, gronked, flared his head feathers and the eagle got distracted.
The eagle bent away from the heron, pulled up his feet and went around for another try.
The look on the eagle’s face was priceless.

Bald Eagles are ALWAYS out to prove just who is the best, strongest, top-of-the-heap.
Or, in this case, winner of the favored branch for a perch.
The 4-1/2-year-old eagle with its back to you has decided he wants the perch the other eagle has already landed on.  Hah!
The velocity of the impact and gravity takes effect and the other 4-year-old eagle is knocked off the perch.
Then the chase is on as the one who started the affair decides he really didn’t want the perch; he just wanted to prove he was the stronger bird.

Moment of Decision
The branches of the trees lining the Haw River were tangled thickets of slate and branches of twisted nickel.
The sky was a shade of grey that gave little definition to the morning.
Abruptly the stillness was broken.
I had not seen the adult bald eagle until he moved.
He was a sharp-winged exclamation point of brilliant white head and flared tail in all the palette of grey.
I took the shot and he disappeared toward the river, leaving behind this image of his decision in my mind.

Gulls suddenly scattered from the surface of the lake in front of the dam tower.
I looked toward the opposite direction of the gulls’ flight.
Sure enough, there was a bald eagle coming across the inlet.
The 3-year-old eagle didn’t bother chasing the gulls.
He crossed in front of me and headed for the tallest tree on the bluff.
Alas, he landed with his back to me, but, oh, he was still a majestic sight.