Thursday, 19 January 2012

Steppe Eagle in the Rice Paddy

It was one of those fantastically sun-drenched late afternoons today so I nipped round to the local rice paddy to see what I could see. I was thinking that it's been some time since I have seen a Pied or Eastern Marsh Harrier. Soon after my arrival I caught the flight of a falcon species, Peregrine I presume, but I really can't say for sure so I won't name it. I followed its flight into the distance eventually alighting on an electricity pylon. I was just getting its bearings when a much larger darker bird caught my eye circling  around the pylon. It was checking out the falcon as if to say "Be careful, son." Black Kite I assumed until  my view opened up and I saw the bird's upperside wings:  white barring , largish head, light brown upper wings - unmistakable Steppe Eagle. I desperately sought to get set up and in doing so probably attracted the eagle's attention. It drifted off in the gentle breeze. But I was very happy nevertheless. What a fantastic bird, visible from my house in real terms.

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