May your holiday be one of peace and joy.
May we each remember that the freedom that was so dearly bought is to be shared amongst kin, friends and countries.
While we thank those who sacrificed for our independence then and continue to give their labor and life for freedom today.
Hershey, the milk-chocolate eagle, soars above us because we also care for his world too.
Having caught his fish with only his right foot,
Hershey needs to secure his grip for the flight to an eating perch.
The fish is still within his focal points as Hershey reaches to place his left foot for added grip.
Makes me a little dizzy just contemplating his bowed head, the forward flight and the downward vision…
The third step in Hershey’s fishing sequence:
Notice that he has caught the fish almost at the surface.
Sometimes I honestly believe bald eagles don’t like getting their feet wet.
Or perhaps it is that, unlike the osprey who so exuberantly goes whole body under when fishing,
the eagle practices a more finessed style of getting its fish.
Yesterday’s photo showed Hershey as he flared his talons preparing to strike.
Today’s photo shows the next step in the fishing sequence.
Hershey is sighting the fish just in front of his feet.
Eagles have two focal points in their eyes; they can see in two different directions at once.
Hershey has the fish in focus and also has things in focus that are at an angle of 45 degrees.
All the better for seeing the fish and its possible escape routes.
This is Hershey.
I have watched Hershey for more than 4 years.
He got his name because he is the lightest colored bald eagle on Jordan Lake that I have seen.
All adult bald eagles have body and wing feathers that are brown,
usually such a deep brown that they often appear to be black.
But Hershey is a rich milk chocolate, hence his name.
There is not much room left in the nest.
I’m not sure who is more worried about sharp talons landing in the wrong place –
mom osprey or the chicks.
Note that as mom lands, her toes are knuckling under to prevent her talons from accidentally harming a chick.
The eagles do the same when in the nest and there is no fish to hold down for shredding.