[CT Birds] Drama at North Farms Reservoir

Russ Smiley arsmiley at comcast.net
Tue Feb 28 00:53:42 EST 2012

After snapping a few photos of the pink-footed goose and killdeer at
Greenbacker's Pond this morning, I stopped by North Farms Reservoir.

I had read a report from someone that there was a bald eagle lurking at the
back yesterday, but I saw no eagle on my arrival today.

As I got back to the car I looked up to photograph a common grackle. As I
swung into my car seat I looked back across the pond to see an adult bald
eagle swoop down to the water.

This eagle had set it sights on having an American coot for breakfast. As I
watched, it circled and plunged into the raft of terrified coots 2 or 3
times before it finally nabbed one.

Coot are shallow divers, so when the eagle made its plunge, the water
erupted as 40 black coot literally dove for cover under the surface.

It finally got one, and after it hoisted itself and the dead coot out of the
icy water, it then flew to the island in back to dine on its victim.

It really was a spectacular display and all the more amazing to me because
it was about 1 mile from rush hour traffic on 91.


Russ Smiley

Marlborough, CT

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