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Bald Eagle Variant

24 February 2015 Written by
Robert Schmeelcke (www.facebook.com/awesomeospreys) sent me photos of a Bald Eagle he photographed at Leesylvania State Park, VA with his Canon 7D & 100-400mm lens. He was wondering at first if it could be part leucistic since it had white feathers on the belly? It does look odd…an adult Bald Eagle…

Wacky Weather and Early Breeding Activity

23 February 2015 Written by
The harsh east coast winter has been getting much of the press, but in the western half of North America this has been one of the warmest winters on record. As a result, I've recently heard several people say something along these lines: "I've noticed some early breeding activity in…

Turkey Vulture Ages

18 February 2015 Written by
Brian Sullivan and I have shared thoughts and observations the past few years on this subject, but it is Brian who originally spurred the discussion and research, so it is with his permission that I share it here. Let's start by saying that juvenile Turkey Vultures have dark heads and…

"Beak" vs. "Bill"

15 February 2015 Written by
There is information on the web about everything these days, and most of it is excellent, but some of it is contradicting. So, my question is: when talking about raptors, what is the more appropriate term to use, "bill" or "beak?" I learned long ago that bill was the proper…

Falcon Flesh Colors

13 February 2015 Written by
This week, a few people brought up the color change from juvenile to adult of the flesh parts: cere - flesh above the bill, orbital ring - ring around the eye, and legs/feet) of North American falcons. To keep it simple…The smaller falcons (Kestrel and Merlin) do not change color…

Perched or Flight?

09 February 2015 Written by
We all love raptor photos, who doesn't; but my question is: do you prefer pictures of birds perched or in flight? I don't have a preference myself, I just appreciate a photo for what it is, and if it is a unique plumage or pose, well, then all the better.…