Immature Prairie Falcon at sunrise next to the Great Salt Lake – Nikon D300, f5.6, 1/1000, ISO 640, +0.3 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light, not baited
Five years ago today it was a bitter, cold morning and I spent it photographing birds and wildlife on Antelope Island State Park. I remember that the cold wind off of the Great Salt Lake made the skin on my face tingle and that without gloves on my hands they quickly started to feel numb.
The bird that started my day was an immature Prairie Falcon at sunrise next to the Great Salt Lake and as the sun started to rise the falcon seemed to glow. The boulder that the young falcon was perched on was still in the shadows when I photographed it which made that glow seem even brighter. How could I resist taking photos of it? A few minutes later I was able to photograph the falcon and the boulder it was perched on in brighter light but I liked this photo with the glow of sunrise on the falcon the most from that morning.
During the winter of 2011 and 2012 I photographed this immature Prairie Falcon quite often along the causeway to Antelope Island. There are times now when I see a Prairie Falcon along the causeway or on the north tip of Antelope Island I wonder if it is the young bird I came to know and appreciate that winter. Since Prairie Falcons can live to be 10 to 20 years old it is quite possible.
Life is good.