On the Wing

Our neighbors came to lunch with their personable, twin four-year-old misters – to dine on a melange of kale, sweet potato, cous cous and shitake mushrooms – no, the tots didn’t eat that, of course, though they managed a bite of grilled cheese.

Creatures great and small. Small, the twin boys. Smaller still, the neighbors’ two-week-old chicks, fur balls, feathers just beginning to sprout.

Whitlinger's chick

A half dozen all told, they represent a handful of varieties, all adorable and all soon enough to be productive egg layers.

On the way up the hill to see the baby birds, looking up into the brimming sky, just by the shy, shallow daytime moon, a creature  stretched its wings, bright white head to bright white tailfeathers. A bald eagle, performing swoop de doo’s with its dun-colored mate. Crisscrossing the air, coming together, falling apart, coming together again in a sequence of performance moves you’d have to be a raptor in love to understand.

Yes, spring is coming, I swear it.


Filed under Cooking, Jean Zimmerman, Nature

6 responses to “On the Wing

  1. Thanks for the input. I’m hoping they stick around near my house so I can get a better look at them!

  2. erin

    It is also possible to see an adult and “dun-colored” or juvie bald eagle doing these sorts of flight acrobatics this time of year too… and its not necessarily a parent and offsping; the older juvies are just getting some practice. I’ve seen this occur before, and did just recently (on the day of eaglefest) see two adults a similar flight display together – just beautiful. its a bit early perhaps for mating to occur, but not for some practice, as is seen this time of year, if you are so lucky. 🙂 its possible too as jean points out that it could be a redtail, but their sizes are so different – if the two birds were similar in size, then they were two eagles. if one was visibly smaller in comparison to the eagle, then perhaps a hawk.

  3. Thanks for the ornithology. Whatever they were, they were having fun!

  4. Lori

    Um, beggin’ yer pardon, ma’m, but if you were watching a bald eagle and it’s ‘dun colored mate’, you might have been watching an adult with offspring. Male and female bald eagles are both colored the same: white head and tail, yellow beak, deep brown body and wings. They don’t acquire full coloration until about 5 years old when mature. Until then the younger ones fly around in search of their own territory or hang around the old nest hoping for a handout.
    It might have been that the dun colored one was a red-tailed hawk as well. They migrate to the south and return about this time of year, whereas Bald Eagles remain in the area through the year.
    Also, it is the wrong time of year for mating flights. Those occur around late March. They do have spectacular mating flights, but the actual mating occurs in a tree top.
    Still, Balds will swoop around and spar with other raptor species and it’s not always a battle. Often the Balds are being attacked in an attempt to drive them from some smaller bird’s territory. They are the largest flighted birds in the area, and they are always in competition with other species. Even songbirds, when feeling threatened, will attack an eagle.
    I would love to have seen what you saw. It is wonderful to see Bald Eagles soaring around.

  5. Beautiful, Jean!

    Anne Marie Marx

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