12 Photos: Watch an Amazing Eagle Family Hunt and Eat on the Hudson River
Sometimes you just need to zone out and watch some amazing Hudson Valley wildlife do their thing. Last week it was cuteness overload with frolicking beavers in Orange county. Today, there's a few more sharp edges involved. Local photographer Joe Licari recently captured some amazing shots of a family of bald eagles feasting, flying, and fighting over some seriously massive chunks of fish on the Hudson River.
When I first saw these photos, I thought I was watching an interspecies food fight. Adult bald eagles may be the most recognizable bird in the entire country (they are our national bird, after all), but to my uneducated eye, it looked like they were facing off against some sort of brown falcon that was trying to come between them and their seafood dinner. Well, you learn something new every day, and today I learned that a bald eagle's head doesn't turn white until adulthood. The massive brown birds seen dive-bombing for fish are actually juvenile bald eagles. Some more amazing shots (including some mid-air food battles) are below, but first, a few things you may not know about our most patriotic feathered friends.
Bald Eagle 101
Eagles make great huggers. Well, theoretically at least. Adult eagles can have a wingspan of up to seven feet, which means they should be good at wrapping their feathers around us in a tender embrace. They'd probably just peck our faces off instead, though.
They love buffets. Eagles eat a wide variety of animals, but most reside by or in the water. That's why you'll see eagles make their homes next to lakes and rivers (like our Hudson). Their menu includes turtles (!) ducks (!!), snakes (I think I saw a flag or two with this on it...) and more.
They're speed demons. While falcons are the fastest birds, eagles can still haul. Adults have been clocked at 100 mph when diving for food.
Check out the amazing photos below as both adult and juvenile bald eagles feast on the Hudson River.