A binocular and/or camera in hand is worth a whole truckload of binoculars or cameras left at home and, sorry to say, I wasn’t on the right end of this maxim, yesterday. My little Pentax Optio A10 camera is usually in my purse, as is my Nikon 5x15HG monocular, but since I was bicycling last night, I accidentally left both in my bike pack.
Sure enough, some of our employees came rushing up, yesterday morning, and told me there was an eagle sitting outside the building on a building light fixture. According to them, it had to be an eagle, since it was very large. As we all rushed out to see the bird, I told them that an eagle was a possibility – I had found them in stranger places and times – but that it was more likely a Red-tailed Hawk, since I had seen this species hunting in the area many times.
Sure enough, the bird proved to be a Red-tailed hawk, sitting unconcerned only twenty yards away on a light fixture on the side of the building. It always amazes me how suburban wildlife tames up so quickly. In my rural Nebraska, the Red-tailed is normally a very cautious bird and this would have been a prime photo opportunity. If I had had my Kowa 663 spotting scope available, I could have taken pics of the hawk’s bill, we were so close.
As it was, without a camera, binocular, monocular or spotting scope, all we could do is watch. Let me tell you, though, I brought a camera and bino, today.