This is part of my loosely-formed Coffee Break methodology. I take my coffee, my camera, and sit in my favorite spots. Sometimes things happen. Sometimes they don’t. Yesterday, this happened:
First sign of trouble … Caspian Tern colony in Interbay flushes from their rooftop roost …
In the distance, over Seattle’s Elliott Bay, a Bald Eagle does a u-turn to pursue a juvenile gull (Glaucous-winged, I believe).
No one is on the eagle’s tail, which is almost unprecedented in this zone of The Crow Patrol. I’m feeling for the gull … intensely. The juvenile gull out-maneuvers the eagle on several turns, but the Bald Eagle is relentless, pursuing the young gull over the Cruise Ship terminal …
The young gull survives several attempts and passes, out-flying the persistent eagle.
From out of nowhere, or somewhere in my distant periphery, reinforcement arrives … passing in the no-passing zone.
The chase then speeds within yards of where I’m sitting with my triple-shot java (yes, I needed the triple) …
… and again, the gull out-flies the eagle and catches a strong drift up over one eagle’s head.
:: Eagles do a wide turn and re-group — just as a bird of a different kind approaches SeaTac Airport. It is Jet City, after all.
:: The Bald Eagles then notice someone on their own tail.
And that someone is ….
The intervening male Osprey saves the day for the gull. The two eagles have all but forgotten the young bird at this point. And, between the offensive Osprey (who has two youngsters on a nearby nesting platform), and a few late-comers to the eagle patrol (gulls and crows), the eagles lose their strategic advantage and decide to move out … over Elliott Bay Marina, and buzzing around the west bend of Magnolia to their haunts in Discovery Park.
Until tomorrow, I’m sure.
And for anyone who missed the tangential link to Andy Kaufman and Mighty Mouse
Great shots!!! Amazing series!!! More espresso!!! 😉
Thank you kindly, Hugh. Wish you could have been there, too — with your own triple-shot.
What a fabulous series of photos! Congrats! Even being in the right spot at the right time it takes some skill to pull off those shots. Very nice! I appreciated your kind comments on my blog yesterday. Hope you will drop by often. It is especially encouraging to get nice comments on my photos from someone with your expertise. To answer your question re: “Mother’s Watchful Eye – July 28” — yes, I do think folks are gentle with the wildlife around Green Lake, at least from what I’ve seen so far. Question: I don’t see a button to allow me to follow your blog … of course I could bookmark it, but just wondering about following. John
Edited 7/31: John, I added a new WordPress subscription link in the right sidebar. See if that works for you.
John, I loved your Space Needle reflections. I was born in Seattle but moved away for many years in 1968. I missed the World’s Fair because my parents didn’t have the decency to birth me until the following year (hehe). 😉 My husband and I lived Northern California for the past many years, and I’ve found, since moving back here, that there’s a relatively gentle public spirit around urban wildlife. I love that aspect very much.
Hi Ingrid, I did find your WordPress subscription link and have used it to follow your blog. Thank you!
Thank you in return.
You are Wonder Woman! How did you get so many birds-in-flight shots!!!!
Now, when I saw your title, the first thing that popped into my mind was Andy Kaufman. And not only do I remember Andy, I remember this very performance on SNL. (We won’t get into the fact that I watched Mighty Mouse back in the day, too.) I remember seeing Andy for the first time on the Dick Van Dyke show.
Steve, thank you for the very kind comments. I love it when you’re out photographing and a story just unfolds before your eyes. Who could ask for more? With birds in flight, I must say I defer to and learn from others who are more skilled than I am … like (ahem, cough, cough) Mia and Ron, who comment here sometimes. I am absolutely in love with the juxtaposition of wildlife against urban settings, I’m not sure why. Others find urban elements distracting, but I see the mix as hopeful and regenerative, I guess.
btw, I remember seeing Andy’s performance on SNL, too … it blew me away. A friend took me to see him in the 70s, and I always say that his show was part of a huge paradigm shift happening in my life. He really thought outside the box, and I’d been a little circle, boxed into a square. I needed to see and meet people living outside the square.
Wow……. that is some fantastic action Ingrid!!
Isn’t it great when you’re just sitting there with a cup of coffee, and a couple of eagles decide to put on a private show for you …. oh, and, no one gets hurt in the process? A few minutes earlier, I’d been in this tiny park with several other people. As the eagle chase was happening, I looked around, and everyone had left. It seems to happen that way. Thankfully, the camera allows for post-event sharing of the experience.
I keep seeing these events on other peoples sites, wish I was there to experience it too.
Glenn, the irony of sightings like this is that I haven’t had time to venture far with my camera. I’ve been photographing, almost exclusively, within a few miles of our place. And the spot where I took this shot is an industrial, shipping port. Luckily, wild animals, a few, have found things to like about this urban enclave. I’m one of only two or three people who regularly ventures into this area with a camera.
I remember watching the cartoon when I was a wee tyke.
I remember Mighty Mouse, too, as a wee tyke.
Excellent action sequence Ingrid! I absolutely love image #12 (upside down eagle presenting talons). Mia and I always shoot in the mornings and have our large insulated coffeee cups full when we leave. Mia gets grumpy without her morning coffee and chocolate donut…
Ron, it’s that intricate balance between caffeination and blood sugar regulation. d:-)
All I can say is WOW. Just shared this on Twitter.
Thanks so much. 🙂