Loess Bluffs November 25, 2019

I almost always go to Loess Bluffs to photograph Bald Eagles the Monday before Thanksgiving. It’s the begining of the waterfowl migration. There are often hundreds of thousand geese and ducks migrating to their winter grounds that rest here. Bald Eagles follow them and often feed on those that don’t make it. It’s common to have many as 100 to 300 Bald Eagles or more during the Nov/Dec timeframe.

These photos will, for the most part, be shown in the order in which they were taken. I’m doing so to let you know how the day went.

Below is the first photo taken as the sun was just starting to come up. Perhaps you’ve already seen it yesterday in my FB post.

This next photo was taken a few minutes later. I was watching an eagle, waiting for enough light to get the shot. Looking back towards the pond, this is what I saw. Many times it pays to look behind while taking pictures. You may be surprised with what you may see.

This next photo was taken just as the sun made it above the horrizon. It has that soft golden glow. For those of you who have been there in the past, this is a new nest on the west side. The one that has been there for several years finially has fallen down. I believe this may be one of the same eagles that’s been nesting there for quite some time. Both were there but I could not get them both in one photograph. This nest is not too far from the old one. BTW, there appears to be three new nest but I saw that two of the older ones have fallen down.

After taking quite a few shots trying to get an angle where the branches were not in the way and not being successful, I moved on.

This guy just continued to graze while I watched. I always love it when they don’t know I’m there or don’t see me as a threat.

He suddenly got a bit anxious when anther car started coming our way.

I moved on not wanting to alert the driver to the deer. It didn’t stop so, I don’t think he saw it. BTW, I didn’t see any big bucks which is unusual for me. They must all be in hiding. I wonder why……

Then came these two Trumpeter Swans sleeping. I guess they must need to get their beauty naps in when they can.

Not that they need beauty rest. They are just simply beautiful.

Below is a family. The gray ones are the cignets. There were hundreds of Trumpeter Swans all over the refuge. These were taken on the east side.

Time to make another trip around….

Got lucky and caught this eagle in good light with a reasonable background. Notice how it can turn its head all the way to its back, much like an owl.

Just a couple more from differnt head angles. Of course, I have many more but…. You know I love to photograph eagles.

Did I say there were a lot of swans? Well, here are a few more family shots. Notice the wind has picked up just a bit.

I love to get them in flight too. I can’t decide which of the next three I like best so, I’ve decided to show all three. I hope you find one to your liking.

Talk about a tight formation. The Blue Angels have nothing on these…

Then next trip around really brought some very interesting critters into view. This guy wouldn’t let me get too close.

There were three of them and again, they wouldn’t allow me to get very close. You don’t suppose they know what’s about to happen on Thursday, do you?

The next critters were a real treat. I just don’t see them very often. Yes, they are a pair of Sandhill Cranes.

It was just too cool to watch them and even better being able to photograph them.

Those of you that know me, know I love to photo raptors. Well, this is the last critter I saw….

It stayed there watching me take its picture for quit a while.

You may have noticed, I don’t have pictures of geese and ducks. Well, I did take some of the ducks but there were not many geese. That’s quite unusual. However, I did notice as I was leaving a huge flock of them landing just off the refuge. Because of all the flooding, there must be many more areas for them to choose from to rest. I wish they would stick to the refuge. I kept hearing gun shots throughout the day.

Well, that was my day. As I’ve said before, I’ve never been dissapointed going to Loess Bluffs. I hope you’ve enjoyed the trip as well.

Thanks for stopping by.

Bill