Wishful Thinking

Rough-legged Hawk with a vole in flight over the Great Salt LakeRough-legged Hawk with a vole in flight over the Great Salt Lake – Nikon D300, f7.1, /1200, ISO 400, +0.7 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light, the hawk caught its own prey, not baited

Two years ago I photographed this Rough-legged Hawk with a vole in its talons as it flew along the causeway to Antelope Island State Park with the Great Salt Lake in the background. The weather had been horrible in the morning so we didn’t get to the causeway until afternoon when the clouds had cleared up and it seemed that the blue of the water was intensified by the crisp blue winter sky overhead.

Bird photography has been very slow for me for some time now, yesterday I went out but didn’t even click the shutter button.  I keep hoping that I will see a few handsome Rough-legged Hawks through my view finder.

Wishful thinking, right?


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About Mia McPherson

I am a nature lover, wildlife watcher and a bird photographer. I first become serious about bird photography when I moved to Florida in 2004 and it wasn’t long before I was hooked (addicted is more like it). My move to the Salt Lake area of Utah was a great opportunity to continue observing their behavior and to pursue my passion for photographing birds.


  1. Mia what a gorgeous photo!

    Give the Bear River MBR a try. I saw a RLH there on Tuesday (10/22), and a friend of mine saw two there the next day. They are on the first leg of the auto loop about halfway down (where they always seem to be there). Keeping my fingers crossed it will be a great year for the Roughies!

  2. excelent capture in fligth, a great ligth too, bravo mia =)))

  3. I’m suffering from wishful thinking, too, after seeing your superb photograph of that hawk!

    It’s wishful thinking that keeps us going back out there!

  4. I hope your avian drought lifts soon in a rain of raptors. And thank you so much for this stunning image.

  5. Gorgeous photo Mia. Strikingly clear. The eye detail is amazing. The lake in the background creates the perfect contrast. You are due for some good raptor action soon.

    -John Fox

  6. Lovely photo. His eye is so sharp!

  7. Are you going through withdrawal symptoms? I am seeing the chickadees again and I am very happy even though I am only capturing half the bird in the frame.On the trail they are now flying up to me where as in the summer they were keeping their distance.

  8. They are on the way Mia. They have just shown up in southern Ontario in good numbers. Bird photography is very slow up here at the moment too! Glen

  9. Supreme shot of a Hawk.

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