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Bald Eagle Takes Laughing Gull

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  • Vincent Lucas
    Greetings: Today, after the regularly scheduled Caloosa Bird Club s fieldtrip to the Big Cypress Bend Boardwalk and Collier-Seminole S.P. in Collier County,
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 2, 2002
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      Greetings:

      Today, after the regularly scheduled Caloosa Bird Club's fieldtrip to the
      Big Cypress Bend Boardwalk and Collier-Seminole S.P. in Collier County,
      several of us checked out a few other locations, namely Eagle Lakes
      Community Park (where 4-5 Bronzed Cowbirds still linger) and Sugden
      Regional Park. At the latter location, we observed something that none of
      us had ever seen. On Lake Avalon, we watched an adult Bald Eagle swoop
      down on a mixed flock of mostly Laughing Gulls and some Ring-billeds that
      were resting on the beach. As the eagle flew overhead, it naturally
      caused all of the gulls to take flight. One hapless Laughing Gull quickly
      became the prey of the Bald Eagle. We watched in fascination, though
      somewhat mortified, as the Bald Eagle carried its prey to a nearby Slash
      Pine where it commenced eating the gull with "feathers aflying" -- from
      the Laughing Gull that is, now lunch! Nearby was the Bald Eagle's mate
      and was later joined by a subadult which we can only assume was the
      pair's offspring.

      Both Vince McGrath and I have observed Bald Eagle's take Cattle Egrets in
      mid-air, but neither of us have seen them take Laughing Gulls. Has anyone
      else observed this spectacle?

      I will post a complete run-down of the birds we encountered on today's
      fieldtrip, but for now, it will have to wait.

      Good birding!

      Vincent Lucas
      Naples
      vplucas@...
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