For those of us who follow this eagle’s nest here in Kane County, Illinois, there is no doubt that one of the highlights during the nesting season is watching the adults bring back dinner from the Fox River, or from a local lake or pond, or perhaps some other game such as ducks or squirrels.
It’s a waiting game, and before the leaves come out on the trees it is much easier to spot the adult coming to the nest from afar. But once Spring has sprung, the good news is that the eaglets high up in the nest will usually spot the incoming adult and start squawking pretty loudly, so all of us waiting to capture the moment with our cameras can get ready and then fire off a few frames.
We just hope we’re on the right side for the landing and the light is good. A good indication of the approach is the direction of the wind as the eagles usually like to fly into the wind for an easier landing. And if you miss one, patience is a virtue.
I chose this particular dinner delivery not so much for the adult eagle as she is mostly shaded, but for the eaglets as they are brightly lit by the setting sun, and they are squawking with their beaks wide open – a common sight as the adult brings them their meal. The fish in the talons is well lit, and although hard to see, there are water droplets coming off the fish so it was freshly caught.
This was taken the first of July, and by this time both of the eaglets had already fledged (one on June 25th and the other on June 28th). However, they had not yet learned how to fish and hunt, so they still rely on the adults for food. For a few weeks on, they will sit in the nest and holler out for Mama to bring them food.
Below are several image galleries of Mama eagle bringing food for her eaglets. Enjoy!