Readers’ wildlife videos

We have just one item today, but it’s a good one! Stephen Barnard has produced a wonderful video of Desi and Lucy, his resident bald eagles, and the two chicks they raised this year. It’s 12.5 minutes long, covers the whole breeding season, and is mesmerizing. Be sure to watch to the end. I won’t give the spoiler, but you know what event marks the end of chick-rearing. Note the chick pooping out of the nest (clearly an adaptive behavior), and the repeated delivery of fish, and one pheasant, to the chicks.

Stephen said that his videomaking (the equipment is described at the end) was influenced by Tara Tanaka, and she kindly gave him advice, but he adds that he’s nowhere near as good as she is—especially taking videos of moving birds. I’m just glad that they hooked up (photographically!) through this site.

Be sure to watch the movie on the original site, full screen, and clicking the “HD” (high definition) box.


  1. GBJames
    Posted August 23, 2016 at 7:55 am | Permalink

    Very nice.

    @Stephan… Where was your camera that you got such nice nest video?

    • Stephen Barnard
      Posted August 23, 2016 at 9:33 am | Permalink

      The scope and camera were located at the place where I took the photo of the nest across the pond.

      • GBJames
        Posted August 23, 2016 at 10:41 am | Permalink

        Heck of a nice lens you’ve got there!

        • Stephen Barnard
          Posted August 23, 2016 at 11:43 am | Permalink

          These Swarovski scopes are pretty amazing. Most of the “footage” was at minimum magnification.

  2. Randall Schenck
    Posted August 23, 2016 at 8:01 am | Permalink

    Really good filming. Lots of editing and work in this too. I think Eagles have come all the way back.

  3. Mark Sturtevant
    Posted August 23, 2016 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    Excellent work, Stephen! Keeping busy, I see…

    • Stephen Barnard
      Posted August 23, 2016 at 9:31 am | Permalink

      It took three months out of my life, but I learned a fair amount about bald eagles.

  4. Debbie Coplan
    Posted August 23, 2016 at 10:14 am | Permalink

    That was really a gorgeous video. For those of us living in a concrete jungle, it’s a quite a thrill to see. I am embarrassed to say, (but I will anyway), my eyes teared up at the end when the chicks are grown and off….

  5. Heather Hastie
    Posted August 23, 2016 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

    I enjoyed this immensely! Beautiful work Stephen.

  6. Stephen Barnard
    Posted August 23, 2016 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for all the compliments.

    I started recording in early April, soon after I discovered the new nest. It’s a big improvement. The nest is directly across from a pond, so there are no trees obstructing the view, and the morning light shines directly on the nest. It’s a one-minute “hike” from a farm road, and less than a mile from my house. You couldn’t ask for much more.

    The video clips are in chronological order, with one exception. All background sound (bird songs, mainly) were recorded on site with the GH4 camera. In some instances, because of traffic noise or other distractions, I overdubbed audio, but I tried to stay true, roughly, to the date and time of day.

  7. HaggisForBrains
    Posted August 24, 2016 at 4:27 am | Permalink

    Beautiful. Add a David Attenborough commentary and it could be on BBC TV. Lovely music too. Well done.

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