I am enjoying my time in the Centennial Valley especially so when I can spend time photographing raptors like this adult light morph Swainson’s Hawk. It had been just about 2 1/2 months since I have been here and it has changed from luscious greens to golden colored grasses. It was pretty brisk yesterday morning with a low of 14°F but it felt invigorating after a long, hot summer in the Salt Lake Valley.
I was tickled when I found this Swainson’s Hawk perched on this gnarly fence post in the morning light.
I wanted to share an image with the hawk small in the frame and the out of focus mountains on the north side of the valley still showing some purple shadows in the sections the sun hadn’t kissed yet. The metal things on the left side of the fence post are bent, rusty nails.
By this time of the morning it was a whopping 32 degrees!
I was glad I had my TC off and was using full frame mode when the Swainson’s Hawk took off because it meant I didn’t clip a wing, a tail or the head of the hawk with any of my shots and I really loved this pose and how one talon was still barely touching the fence post when this frame was taken.
As the Swainson’s flew west I was able to get a few more images of it in flight where I still had some light in the eye.
Swainson’s Hawks are one of my favorite raptors and I am always happy to spend time photographing and observing them but even more so when the location is as beautiful as the Centennial Valley of Montana.
Life is good.
(PS, all birds are my favorites)