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Ann Britton Outback Photography


Warning a bit of eagle spam

When I was younger, and we would sit around as kids and talk about what you would be if you were reincarnated.
Didn’t do this?
Oh well we did. I always thought I would come back as an eagle and soar the Grand Canyon.
I have never been to America. #bucketlist
Why I didn’t dream of soaring over Outback Australia as a Wedgetail Eagle I have no idea. (maybe television influence)
Considering I love flying but my body doesn’t and I suffer motion sickness, terribly, this dreaming doesn’t make much sense. But as a kid, I didn’t realise my lack of being able to soar without being sick.
A captain of an old fashion sailboat told me once never to have a bath, yep the seas were that calm but I was still sick. I take tablets from the flight from Mt Isa to Brisbane, but I am getting better as I can now look out the window. I have found acupuncture is just bliss, unbelievably so, magic.

This meme isn’t completely true …… but who lets a bit of tall story boasting get in the way, amongst friends ☺️

Anyway, moving right along, the reason for this blog was for me to tell you a story, an experience that I had with one of these majestic birds. The Outback Wedgetail.

Many moons ago, I was doing a bore run around Black Mountain.
After checking and leaving Black Mountain bore, the furthermost bore north of Goodwood, I came upon an eagle stuck in an old fence. Hanging in a very unnatural way, from the barb wire.
Considering that the eagle (I will refer to as he/him for easy writing) was no doubt totally annoyed and rather pissed off, I wondered how I could help him get free. Considering their beak and sharp claws, I was thinking about how this was going to go down if I even tried to approach him.
I pushed plan B out of my mind to concentrate on plan A, free him safely.

I parked the car away from him, donned on my gloves and approached him, calmly talking to him. He shifted a little, never taking his eyes off me. On closer inspection, his wing was caught in the barb wire. I went back to the car for pliers. Again approaching him, talking calmly, He looked healthy, so he may not have been there long. I slowly touched him, no reaction. Just those piercing eyes staring at me. I discovered he was caught by one prong, of one barb. It was fixed fast into a feather of his wing. I gathered him up slowly but firmly, forever talking to him, there was no struggle. I had to truly give a strong but gentle yank to get the prong out. All the while his face, that strong beak, and those very intense eyes where ever close to my face. When he was free of the barb, I held him firm in both hands, gave him a quick inspection and threw him in the air, hoping he was able to fly. He did, and as he flew away, he turned his head and looked over his wing at me.

Nope, I didn’t take any photos, I think my main concern was for the eagle’s welfare.
I will never forget the experience.
It could have been a totally different outcome if the eagle had struggled.

People fear eagles, and would never get as close as I do when taking photos.
I have never had the cause for alarm.

Also, I do understand that sheep farmers may not think of eagles the way I do, that is understandable. I have been a sheep farmer and worked for sheep farmers. I do know the damage they can do to lambs.
I know the damage roos, emus, dingoes can do too (if not managed correctly) but that doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate the animals for what they are.
Crows are a very clever bird and must be appreciated for their survival skills and adapting to living in urban sprawl if their territory is closer to the coast. Also, remember that a crow has no trouble pecking out the eyes of a ewe lying down lambing, or the eyes of a calf still being born and the mother in both situations can’t defend herself or her offspring.
Nature is all about survival, it is not always cute and cuddly when it comes to existing.
Maybe the eagle knew to survive I was his only hope and he had to trust me!

I must also add that in our neck of the woods, eagles are in healthy numbers.

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Eagle on branch
: I think these birds are very majestic. They are in large numbers in our shire and very cheeky when feeding off roadkill, which makes them a potential hazard to travellers. Knowing the direction of the wind helps, birds take off into the wind.
.18pm 2 August 2014 Image No PBR 4038

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