Conowingo Dam and Middle Creek – 12/17/10

Today was my first day back in Hershey for winter break. Chris and Mark Markiewicz and their friend Paul, and I went down to Conowingo Dam to see if there were good numbers of Bald Eagles around. We all went last year at this time and saw hundreds of eagles, this year was much different. We ended up seeing a total of only 15 eagles; 7 adults, 4 4th years, 2 3rd years, 1 2nd year, and 1 juvenile. Nonetheless, we had a great time watching the eagles and other birds. I also just bought myself a new camera, so this was the perfect opportunity to try it out. I purchased the Canon T2i and the 400mm f/5.6L lens; below are some of the photos I took today.

4th year Bald Eagle

Juvenile Bald Eagle

2nd Year Bald Eagle

Oldsquaw (adult female)

White-breasted Nuthatch

After two hours at the dam, we drove north back to PA and stopped for an hour and forty-five minutes at Middle Creek WMA. 95% of the lake was frozen over, but in the small pockets of open water, there were lots of waterfowl. The most numerous species were Canada Geese, Mallards, American Black Ducks, and Tundra Swans. We also saw a Northern Pintail, two Wood Ducks, 9 Northern Shovelers, and 3 Ruddy Ducks. Two juvenile Northern Harriers gave us nice and close looks too.

Northern Harrier (juvenile male)