Spring and summer are not the best times to see large birds of prey, it’s much better in the late fall or winter. Yet the meetings are not entirely impossible and, as in this case, sometimes completely unexpected.
I was in an area I know, but this time I was driving along a new small road between cultivated fields and forests; I had just photographed a male roe deer from the cockpit of the car, when I saw something big and dark moving over the trees. I drove toward it, I crossed a small strip of forest and, on the other side, I saw a Red Kite flying. Strange, I thought, the color didn’t seem so reddish and then it was much bigger … Then, suddenly, a sea eagle comes out and, obviously curious, decides to pass right in front of the cockpit: I had the camera set for the roe deer, I quickly changed the settings and I succeeded, despite the position not really comfortable, to get some shots. It flew over me for about fifteen seconds, maybe half a minute at most, then it disappeared behind the woods. I searched for a long time in the area, the sky was clear and in many places I had a complete view. Yet nothing, it just disappeared …
Although, I’m sure, it was watching me somewhere.
Some informations: The white-tailed sea eagle, or gray eagle (Haliaetus albicilla), a large raptor of the Accipitridae family, can measure between 66 and 94 cm in length, can weigh up to 7 kg and has a wingspan that varies between 1,78 and 2.45 meters wide. Impressive! In Sweden it is found mainly along the Baltic Sea coast, in the southern and central lakes, and in Lapland. In winter, Swedish sea eagles can move south to central Europe, but they can also travel over shorter distances or remain in the breeding area. And this is also the reason why it is easier to see them here in the south during the winter period.