Passing Cloud – Eagles Fishing

Bird Watching

We learned so much on our Gwaii Haanas sailing expedition! One of our favourite places to be was standing or sitting at the bow of Passing Cloud, an excellent place to spot wildlife…

Haliaeetus leucocephalus

Eagles are everywhere in Haida Gwaii! Close to shore we heard them meeping frequently, and we often saw them sitting on snags.

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Young Bald Eagle

We were also very lucky and several times we saw them circling a patch of ocean far out from shore…

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Rhinoceros Auklets

…where every once in a while one would swoop right down to the water …

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Grabbing

and swoop up again with its talons full of fish!!

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slippery

It is exciting to watch, but if the eagle’s feathers get too wet it will have to swim to shore.

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Escapees

…and if the fish wriggle enough they can squirm away!!

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Immature Bald Eagle

The little tiny head of a Rhinoceros Auklet is visible in the lower left corner of this picture.  An earlier picture shows a pair of them floating on the surface – these birds are essential to the ocean fishing strategy of the eagles.

Auklets locate a school of herring, anchovy or other small fish, and they fly round and round underwater,  gathering the fish up into a “bait ball”. Then the Auklets catch the fish by swimming through the ball of fish with their beaks open.  The Eagles can spot a bait ball from far off, and fly over to take advantage of the concentrated fish.

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Islands

There sure is a lot to learn about connections and balance between ocean, earth, and living beings!

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Thanks so much to our favourite photographer for the spectacular bird photos!

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Please  click here  to see the website of Outer Shores Expeditions,

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If you want to see where Passing cloud is right now, click here!

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8 thoughts on “Passing Cloud – Eagles Fishing

  1. Wow, meeping, circling, swooping,fishing, wriggling, flying, photographing! Much was captured in this narrative that is totally unknown to this land lady. Thanks for the opportunity to view life from the Passing Cloud.

  2. It’s a happy story… the return of the bald eagle from numbers so low. Your photos were spectacular. Loved every one of them.

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