Eagles and Otters

Ranger Paul's well documented birding adventures got me to thinking it might be something I could try this winter. I certainly don't plan on twitching any time soon. Though I did subscribe to a local bird list (mnbird) and reports of a Long-eared Owl in Crystal sparked my interest. I know, way too geeky already.

This morning Deanna and I discovered we had one of those rare days with no commitments ahead of us. The sun was shining so I suggested we give the new field guide it's first workout. To my surprise, she agreed (as long as we could stay warm in the process). So we loaded the kids in the car and off to the Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge we went.

The teenagers were less than enthusiastic. A few minutes into the journey they cracked open the field guide and I think they forgot how nerdy an errand this was. We got there a little late to catch much activity. I think the very recently frozen wetlands had most all the wildlife hunkered down. But near the end of our tour we happened across this scene. There were 2 adult bald eagles, the pictured juvenile, and several otters playing in what little open water was left in front of their den. Well worth the 15 mile drive. Alondra thought it was fun anyway.

1 comment:

P. Ollig said...

Good score with the otters and the eagles! Winter in Minnesota is a tough time of year to really get into birding, but if you stick with it into spring your id-ing skills will be ready for the big migration.

Next fall I'd totally recommend you guys making a trip up to Hawk Ridge. It's on a raptor flyway and is one of the best places in the midwest to see lots (and I mean LOTS) of cool birds in a short amount of time. I bet the kids would even get excited about it (once they get there and see how cool it is). You'll just need to time it correctly.