Bald Eagle

Haliaeetus leucocephalus

9 March 2002

photos by Mark A. McConaughy

This nesting Bald Eagle was found in Western Pennsylvania. The exact location of the nest is not being revealed to protect the nest and eagles. The photograph was shot from on top of a bluff overlooking the nest. We were NOT close to the nest. The close shot is due to use of a new digital camera with a 10X zoom lens set around 10X and looking through my spotting scope with a 32X objective. The effective magnification of all of these shots is 10X times 32X or around 320X.

This is a second shot of the nesting Bald Eagle that is similar to the first. These are the two sharpest photographs that were taken at long distance. The red object to the right of the Bald Eagle is a large-sized McDonalds french fry carton.

There was a pretty good wind causing the scope to vibrate and the camera was hand held using its autofocus system. This has resulted in less than sharp shots of the nest. I have also greatly reduced the size, both in terms of dimensions and in file size, of these pictures for use on the web site. However, I think they are good enough for folks to view and enjoy.

Another less than sharp photograph, but the only one I was able to get of the single egg that is in the nest. It is possible that another egg will be laid, but only one was present on 9 March. The Bald Eagle only got up briefly and I only had time to snap the one picture of the egg. I suspect the leaves will be out on the tree by the time they hatch, so views of the little eaglets may be difficult to obtain. We were not able to determine if the Bald Eagle on the nest was the male or female. The other mate did not come in while we were there, and we could not compare sizes to determine the sex of the individual eagles.

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