On Sunday morning I went to bellevue State Park to take my regular walk. As I got out of my car and started across the parking lot something flew across the sky ahead into a grove of trees to my right.
It looked fairly large, but I only caught it out of the corner of my eye, so I thought it might be a hawk. We have had Peregrine Falcons land in our backyard a couple times this year and you sometimes see hawks standing atop the lamp post alongside I-95.
I turned on my camera as I walked off the lot onto the road starting my walk. As I rounded the first trees I saw a large bird perched on a branch and still thought it was a hawk, but as my route brought me nearer I realized it was much to large for a hawk.
I stopped at the wood edge and thought, "That's got to be an eagle."
I stood there filming and the bird either didn't notice me or wasn't concerned about me if it did. A car went past, which you can hear in the background of the video, and I stepped a little further off the road. At this point the eagle flew up to a high limb on another tree.
I didn't want to bother it, so I went on my walk. I walked, round trip, about three and a half miles. As I retuned along this stretch back to my car I didn't see the eagle anymore. I assumed it had flown off to where ever these eagles go while I was on my little jaunt. I got in my car, but as I left I saw the eagle was still in these trees. It had just moved a bit further back into the trees and was sitting happily on another branch.
I am not sure what kind of eagle it was. I know Bald Eagles lived in this area. This one did not have the white head associated with that breed, but it could have been a young one. They don't develop those distinctive white heads until more mature, around five years old or so. What ever it was it was majestic. When it flew it was like watching a cargo plane take off, large and slow, although it was probably faster than it appeared. I repeated the portion where it flew in slow motion so you can see the motion of the wings and their span.
Last fall the family and I went out to dinner one night and an eagle flew out of the woods directly in front of my car. This was on I-95 not far from home, which is this same region. The bird came so low and sudden I feared I was going to hit it, but it pulled up enough to just clear the car roof. My kids kidded how it would look if I had killed the national symbol.
I wondered if this was that same eagle.