Thursday, July 13, 2023

Family of eagles


I have managed to show a few decent pictures of eagles on clerkmanifesto over the years. They are fond of the Mississippi River up here, and that's where I do most of my rambling as well. I'm a ramblin' man. With a camera. I'm out to do the best I can, as I go ramblin' round. 

That last bit's from a Woody Guthrie song. It's a pretty sad song. Peaches come into it.

But I digress.

For some years a couple of eagles have made their home around this immediate area. On a nearby Mississippi River bridge one can often see, in the mornings particularly, one of the eagles hanging out for hours at a time on a single, favored branch high over the waters. Sometimes the second eagle joins him but not for long. Up the River, on the Minneapolis side, lies their nest. It is in a big pine tree behind a house with a red tiled roof on the river road. This year the eagles had two babies.

We're getting on into the Summer here and the baby eagles are nearly as big, if not bigger than, their parents. Though as juvenile bald eagles do, their heads and tail feathers have yet to turn white. We had heard from a random stranger that one of the children had left the nest, but yesterday, when I went over to take a look, that turned out to be not the case. Four eagles were visible on or around the nest. Curiously the adults were sort of in the nest, eating something. The kids were hanging out on nearby branches.

Often times it is difficult to get a nature picture that does any justice to the scene one experiences. In this case the upward angle hampered me some, but much worse was the eagles' location behind someone's house! I was not about to tramp up into people's front yards (and into the back), in pursuit of a clearer shot, and finding an angle through the trees, from the edge of the road (there is no sidewalk) was not conducive to the best results.

I did take pictures though.

They looked something like this:

This is the real, unfiltered deal here. You can see the fourth eagle's tail in the upper right.

This was roughly the quality of the better pictures I took, and if you want only the unvarnished truth, you might want to look away now. Because after this introduction, I'll be indulging my unholy powers to sort of spruce things up a bit.

So here then are my versions that are a little more like how it looked, even as it is far less exactly as it was.

This first take has only minor alterations to improve a similar picture to the one above. It does, alas, cut out the fourth eagle:

And so with this we add in the fourth eagle, although not in his original location:

Although that one looked a bit... fake?

This one gets the grouping and feel just right, I think:

Of course the real danger is, once a person starts heading down this kind of path...

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