Bald eagle

I eventually got to take a few pictures of the bald eagle residing on my paddling lake. The weather had been very windy for the 2021-2022 Christmas Holiday, cooling any motivation to get on the kayak. Towards the end of the holiday, when the wind eventually subsided, with less than an hour of daylight left in the day, I went for a dusk paddle. I visited one of the perch I knew the bird uses, from downwind, hiding with the kayak in the reeds. I was almost surprised: the bald eagle was there. I took a few pictures, the light was low already, then slowly backed off, to avoid disturbing the animal.

I took the pictures at 1/640 sec. f/5.6 400 mm, ISO 2500. At 400mm of focal length, hand held on a not so stable kayak, I wanted to maintain a high shutter speed. The lens was full open at f/5.6, and I compensated for the low light and relatively modest aperture by boosting the ISO to the edge of what is reasonable, even on modern sensors. Then I had to process the images a bit more than usual to recover the colors, somewhat faded by the twilight.

Approaching the eagle, undetected.
It has now turned around – time to back off.