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Washington D.C. Riders: Keep An Eagle Eye Out For....(12 posts)

Washington D.C. Riders: Keep An Eagle Eye Out For....Gregory Taylor
Jan 7, 2004 8:22 AM
....Bald Eagles. Yessiree. Commuting in this morning along the bike trail that runs along Potomac River, the guys that I ride with, Rolling Thunder, noticed a big ol' bird flying along and keeping pace with us. It dipped down and roosted in a tree overlooking the water that was right next to the trail. Rolling by the tree, we noticed another big ol' bird sitting on the same branch. This big ol' bird had white head and tail feathers...it was a pair of Bald Eagles.

We stopped at got a good look at the pair. Magnificent is the only word that comes to mind. We were only 15 or so feet away. I would have killed for a camera. The male looked at us for a while, and then decided that he had better things to do than stare at a couple of cold cyclists.

For you local types, we were just south of National Airport, between the Airport and Potomac Landing, near the bridge that takes the Parkway over Four Mile Run.
You're a better man than Ipmf1
Jan 7, 2004 8:42 AM
Man, it was just too cold for me this morning.
Wow!Alex-in-Evanston
Jan 7, 2004 8:53 AM
What a great way to start the day. I remember seeing a Bald Eagle at Great Falls when I was very small. Is this the first time you've seen one in the area?

When I've seen Bald Eagles in the winter I'm always struck by the yellow in the beak and the talons. In a bare, snowy tree, it's the color that stands out most.

Alex
They are making a comeback on the Potomac...Gregory Taylor
Jan 7, 2004 9:01 AM
This is the first time that I've seen one this "up close and personal". I've seen some from a distance in Dyke Marsh, which is a mile or so south of Alexandria, and a couple flying over Mason Neck, near Gunston Hall.

Wow is right. Very cool.
I saw one flying there on Jan 1cyclopathic
Jan 7, 2004 9:44 AM
they must have nest close by. Now yesterday morning I saw a fox on Oxon Cove trail. We sprinted and then he took off the trail.
The first lie I can remember telling my daughter had to do withdjg
Jan 7, 2004 11:19 AM
an eagle in our backyard in Arlington. It was back against the fence, away from the house, but from where I stood it couldn't be plainer that the thing was rending strips of flesh from the carcass of some unfortunate little beastie. What's it doing daddy? Um ... it's ...
Any immature birds?bigrider
Jan 7, 2004 1:07 PM
They don't get their white heads and tail feathers until about 3 years. The young ones look black with speckles, we call them skunk birds. I am lucky to see eagles at least three times a week and that is without trying. There is a huge population in the area (several hundred). They are simply beautiful and majestic when you see them close. Their cry is unmistakable and almost sounds eery.
Couldn't really say....Gregory Taylor
Jan 7, 2004 1:18 PM
I'm not a birder by any stretch of the imagination. One bird had the full white head and tail. The second bird had a white tail, but a solid dark body/head.

I've been told by the Rangers at Mason Neck Park that there are several nests down at that end of the river.

It's actually been a freakin' nature show around Maison Lardbutt lately. I spooked a fox coming home a few weeks ago, we have some BIG barred owls in the woods across the street, and now I come across this pair of eagles. Time to call Marlin Perkins.
Call Marlins assistant Jim too...teoteoteo
Jan 7, 2004 1:46 PM
...Since Jim did all the damn work while Marlin stayed at a safe distance (that is stolen Schtick)

Anyway, speaking of eagle heads any DC types going to the USPS Team presentation in DC on January 20 to see eagle heads on blue jerseys? Greg that would be an easy score with Gerard and the Cyclingnews gang for a story. I'll even give you some tricks (blackmail) to stop LA in his tracks and give you some words for the piece. (laughs...just kidding I know nothing and I am sticking to it)
And I Can Imagine What Those Words Might Be....Gregory Taylor
Jan 7, 2004 1:57 PM
"As Jim fended off a series of ferocious kicks to the groin by a startled Lance Armstrong, I quietly retired to the safety of my tent back at base camp, secure from any attack by an enraged Tour de France winner. You too can experience that type of security with insurance from Mutual of Omaha..."
That is too funny, GT!! Jim was always wrasslin' gators...Dale Brigham
Jan 7, 2004 2:17 PM
while Marlin was back "in the blind." The smooth MOA insurance commercial segues were also part and parcel of the Wild Kingdom experience.

BTW, Dr. Marlin Perkins, curator of the St. Louis Zoo, was the real deal as a zoologist. That was confirmed for me when I took advanced animal physiology as an undergrad. In the course text, his research work was cited in regard to some critter that had some (now, to me, forgotten) fancy physiological trick up its sleeve.

Dale
The area's LOUSY with 'em ...Humma Hah
Jan 8, 2004 7:56 AM
... during certain portions of the year. I've seen 13 at once down there when they're migrating. The only place I've seen more is Alaska.

Its quite marvelous! You should see 'em riot: they'll sit around in trees until one gets hungry and decides to go fishing, then the rest take flight and try to steal the fish. National bird food fight!