Readers’ wildlife photographs

It’s Stephen Barnard Day again, as he’s sending me photos on the road, and I have some in old emails. These are in fact from May 3.

Bald Eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus): Desi keeping a close lookout and  Lucy on the nest. [JAC: the eaglets have now hatched and fledged]:

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American Avocet (Recurvirostra americana):

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Deets 🙂 (Canis lupus familiaris):

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Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura):

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Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) attacking another goose:

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Swainson’s Hawk (Buteo swainsoni):

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22 Comments

  1. Hempenstein
    Posted June 30, 2015 at 9:18 am | Permalink

    Hi Deets – 🙂 indeed!

    Fascinating bills on those avocets, too. Now I need to go look up their range.

  2. Posted June 30, 2015 at 9:21 am | Permalink

    Good pictures as ever.

    I’m always amused by a full face shot of the bald eagle. America’s bird appears to be born with a permanent squint.

    • Diane G.
      Posted July 1, 2015 at 3:08 am | Permalink

      It’s the slight supraorbital ridge above the eyes–cuts down a little bit of the sun glare from above. Seen in many birds of prey, which is why they can look so fierce.

      Stephen’s photos are so sharp that you can see the ridges casting their shadows in that first shot. 🙂

  3. TJR
    Posted June 30, 2015 at 9:23 am | Permalink

    Excellent as ever. Anyone know anything about the reason for the recurved beak?

    • Hempenstein
      Posted June 30, 2015 at 9:26 am | Permalink

      Per the Cornell link, and as suspected, easier to catch unsuspecting noms while skimming the water.

      • TJR
        Posted June 30, 2015 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

        Yes, that did look a bit of a dumb question when the link was there, what I was getting at was how common or evolvable that sort of beak shape is, as well as how useful.

        • Stephen Barnard
          Posted June 30, 2015 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

          They wade in shallow water and swipe their beaks back and forth in the silt to catch insect larvae and small crustaceans. The upturned beak appears well adapted for this. When the weeds come in and the water gets deeper they leave.

          • TJR
            Posted July 1, 2015 at 9:26 am | Permalink

            Thanks.

            Sort of like the bird version of a blue whale, then.

  4. Karl Heinz
    Posted June 30, 2015 at 9:58 am | Permalink

    I just want to say that I love these wildlife pics.

    Thank you, Professor Coyne, for having this segment. Thanks also for all the other stuff, too.

  5. Kevin
    Posted June 30, 2015 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    Does Deets actually need a leash out where he lives?

    • Stephen Barnard
      Posted June 30, 2015 at 10:35 am | Permalink

      No. He’s only on a leash when I take him to the vet. He freely roams outside all day, but he knows to stick around.

  6. Posted June 30, 2015 at 10:39 am | Permalink

    I still say carrion birds are unfairly maligned. They’re about as beautiful as birds get.

    b&

    • Diane G.
      Posted July 1, 2015 at 3:10 am | Permalink

      I think vultures are incredibly cool looking, in a rather macabre way.

  7. Debbie
    Posted June 30, 2015 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    As always…very thrilling photographs.

  8. Mark R.
    Posted June 30, 2015 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

    A nice batch of photos Stephen. Deets looks like he’s been in the water. Good boy!

  9. Todd Steinlage
    Posted June 30, 2015 at 8:49 pm | Permalink

    The photos are beautiful, as always! I would love to take Deets hiking, though I have a feeling he would herd me where HE wants to go. What a handsome boy 🙂

  10. Mark Joseph
    Posted June 30, 2015 at 11:11 pm | Permalink

    That first picture might be the best bald eagle portrait yet.

    • Stephen Barnard
      Posted July 1, 2015 at 12:36 am | Permalink

      It’s a little odd. They see me and Deets every day, and they tolerate me and him, but I always have the feeling that they resent presence. That’s partly due to their stern expression, that they can’t help. It’s built-in.

  11. Taskin
    Posted July 2, 2015 at 12:32 am | Permalink

    Beautiful photos! I especially like the avocet and Swainson’s hawk and what a fantastic portrait of Deets.

    • Stephen Barnard
      Posted July 2, 2015 at 12:38 am | Permalink

      Meets got skunked today. It’s not too bad.

      • Stephen Barnard
        Posted July 2, 2015 at 12:39 am | Permalink

        *Deets*


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