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Entries in Carolina Raptor Center (4)


Puck, the American Kestrel

Puck the American Kestrel (1 of 1)

I normally do not like to photograph captive animals, but with how wary raptors are, I would probably never get a chance to get this close to one. At the Carolina Raptor Center, once in Spring and Fall, you have a chance to photograph these birds outside of their enclosures.


Puck, is an American Kestrel and one of the most colorful of the raptors there. Thanks little guy for posing for me!




I'd Be A Poor Man If I never Saw an Eagle Fly...

Carolina Raptor Center CRC CNPA event 3-16-2013 1


Latta came to the Carolina Raptor Center as an injured Bald Eagle. After a 3 month Rehabilitation, Lata, was released back into the wild at the Latta Plantation on Lake Norman. I had been shooting with a group of fellow photographers at the CRC and there was to be an eagle release at 2pm. 

It was a no brainer for us! After a quick lunch we headed back.

This was the first time I have ever saw an eagle fly and it reminded me of the John Denver Song "Rocky Mountain High", where he says "I'd know he'd be a poor man if he never saw an eagle fly". Here are a few shots of Latta as once again he tasted freedom!


Carolina Raptor Center CRC CNPA event 3-16-2013 4



Eagle Fly Free


I think these photos capture the joy of a bird tasting freedom for the first time since his injury. Thanks to the Carolina Raptor Center, he lived to fly again.




PhotoWILD at the Carolina Raptor Center

Edgar working the scene. 1188


I headed over to the Carolina Raptor Center early Saturday morning and again today for the PhotoWild Event. Photowild is a fundraiser for the CRC and gives photographers a chance to photograph birds of prey outside their enclosures. It is probably as close as one can get to these magnificent creatures for some extreme close up action.



We gotta get outta here, Barn Owl Flight from Tether 1231



Set me Free (Golden Eagle) 1202




The challenge to photograph these birds is to try and make it APPEAR that they are in the wild. All these birds wear tethers which can sometime ruin that appearance. I don't "Photoshop" images since I am an Aperture 3 user and most of my edits are to only enhance the RAW images that come from my camera, and I occasionaly remove/retouch/clone distracting elements, but I usually try to crop via my lens. Nothing wrong with photoshop, it's just not something I want to use now and Aperture 3 does what I need. However sometimes the truth can be interesting!



Seriously! 1186


This was my second time to the Carolina Raptor Center and I wanted to really give my new Canon 7D  a work out and see what it could do with my "L" Glass Lenses. I am totally impressed. Thanks to my fellow photographer and friend Cliff Black who provided me with some tips and tricks using it! Thanks Cliff! Cliff and I shoot with pretty much the same gear except the flash and the editing software! Great minds think alike!



Golden Eagle in the Rain 1205



Curves Golden Eagle 1207



Who'll stop the rain (Golden Eagle) 1203



Golden Eagle EYES 1208



Golden Eagle in the Rain 1209


My favorite bird is the Golden Eagle and I worked this bird for a long time. Such a noble animal. I like the Bald Eagle too, but it is like the difference between a US Marine in dress uniform vs. Combat Fatigues to me. It was raining so it made the light soft and easy to control!



Watcha Gonna Do About it Buster


The Spectacled Owl was one of the most expressive birds out there. Sometimes he looked very angry, but he was a gentle creature!



Peregrine Falcon 1232


The fastest animal of the planet, the Peregrine Falcon! 



Red Tailed Hawk  Also 85/366 Project



Red Tailed Hawk 1226


We have a large Red Tailed Hawk that lives nearby and getting a chance to photograph one up close was a real treat for me! 



Owl in Flight 1218



Eagle Owl 1223



Owl in Flight 1214


I really liked the flight of the Eagle Owl!


Several of us CNPA members were there and we had a wonderful time fellowshipping in the hobby we love so well. 


Thanks for Reading!





Where Eagles Dare

Carolina Raptor Center Golden Eagle


This morning I met up with the CNPA at the Carolina Raptor Center for a private photo shoot for 3 hours. This is my personal favorite of the set as I love Golden Eagles and how the light was working for this shot. 



Carolina Raptor Center Golden Eagle


I really enjoyed playing around with the lighting on this shot! Very majestic bird!



Carolina Raptor Center Owl 14/366


The CRC had a wide variety of birds of prey, especially the owls. These shots were taken with my Canon EF 100-400mm lens and it worked wonderfully.  The background is blurred out and the way I shot this the pine needles in front of the owl is out of focus and barely noticeable!



Carolina Raptor Center  Owl 642



Carolina Raptor Center Owl 643


I really like how this Great Horned Owl can change his looks from gentle owl to "I'm going to GET you!" by retracting his 'horns'.



Carolina Raptor Center Barn Owl 641


This is a barn owl and was actually my first subject of the day. It was then I noticed the 'light' and how it outlined the edge of this bird. I looked for the same light later on. Glad I am able to notice when the 'light' is doing some cool things to my subject!



Carolina Raptor Center Screech Owl 651


This was one of the few shots I used my 24-70mm instead of my EF 100-400mm on to show how little this screech owl is and how well he blended in to this tree trunk. You will probably never notice one of these little birds in the forest as they sit very still. 



Carolina Raptor Center Screech Owl 645


Here is a close up of this tiny owl. One of my favorites of the day!


Carolina Raptor Center Peregrine Falcon


Here is a Peregrine Falcon, one of the fastest animals on with a recorded dive speed of 202 mph! What an amazing creature!

After the photos, we headed up the road and enjoyed some BBQ and good coversation. I had a great time and thanks to the CNPA for coming up with some great venues for us nature loving photographers!


Thanks for reading!