I arrive at first light. The air is cool and thick with moisture. Standing among a small group of flowers I take in my surroundings. Sandwiched between the famous city of Seattle and the massive towering trees of the Olympic National Forest lies the Hood River Canal, a tidally influenced body of water that attracts a wide variety of impressive animals.
Its high tide and a small group of geese nervously swims across the open water. The vibrant trees along the shore mixed with the rising sun cast a beautiful reflection that covers the surface of the water with an amazing array of color.
A seal decides to see what's happening above the water. Another seal lazily floats upside down and then slowly disappears below the surface. There is an entirely different world just below the surface of the water and the tide rushing past this great blue heron is a really good sign that this area is about to under go a massive change as all of that water just magically vanishes.
The receding tide exposes thousands of oysters and all kinds of creatures that were once underwater now scramble for safety because there are eyes watching from above. The Great Blue Herons are first on the scene and they eagerly scan the water for food. They may be the first on the scene but this gull is the first bird to strike blood as it pulls an unsuspecting fish from its once safe location of oysters.
Another Heron a little further out has managed to catch a fish but the heron's are not the top level of the food chain here. A much larger bird is also here for the feast and that bird is the always impressive bald eagle.
Experiencing and photographing one eagle is always great but this location has several and each eagle wants its own fish for breakfast and they don't mind taking it from herons or other eagles. Armed with my Nikon D850, I give you a front row seat to the incredible bald eagle action captured on the Nikon D850.
For more wildlife and bird photography action, check out my youtube channel: Mark Smith Photography on Youtube