Is there any bird more easily recognizable in the United States than our national bird? The Bald Eagle is undoubtedly one of the most majestic and well-known birds in the country.
I spotted this one while touring the Sacramento Wildlife Refuge in California. An area for migratory and resident birds to stay safely, it boasts a wealth of avian life from across the United States. The refuge is a wonderful place for any birdwatcher – you can see a huge variety of birds, some of which you would almost never see in California otherwise.
When my family and I toured the refuge, the day was cold and foggy, with not much visibility for birders. As a result, we didn’t have the highest expectations about being able to see much. However, at one point, were able to point out a silhouette of a large, raptor-like figure in a tree to our right. As we got a bit closer, we were able to see past the fog and realized that it wasn’t just any raptor – it was a Bald Eagle!
In Central/North California, we get quite a few Golden Eagles, but I have found Bald Eagles to be quite rare – where I live, there are mostly mountains and not as much by way of coastal areas, making them even rarer. In the past, I have seen Bald Eagles in Canada and in Washington State, but never before over here. However, The Sacramento Wildlife Refuge has a wealth of water bodies, making it an ideal habitat and landing spot for fish-hunters like Bald Eagles and Ospreys. Seeing a wild Bald Eagle, and seeing one just a few feet away from where I was standing was a real treat.
You can learn more about the Bald Eagle on my bird identification website, FindYourBird!