While we were at the State of Tennessee’s nice wildlife refuge at Hiwassee on 12/24/11, we saw three eagles. Two of these eagles were definitely Bald Eagles. The other eagle may have been a Golden Eagle or a juvenile Bald Eagle. The eagles were there because of the abundant waterfowl, fish in the lake, and huge numbers of cranes. This is the Winter home for the Sand Hill and Whooping Cranes. The Bald Eagles also hunt for small rodents in the forests and corn fields along the small lake.
The viewing platform was quite a ways away from the lake where the Bald Eagles flew. We have Bald Eagles here in the Winter months in Eastern-Middle Tennessee. Some pairs of eagles also live in the region all year around. Both genders of Bald Eagles pretty much look the same. The juvenile Bald Eagles are largely brown and black with touches of white. Golden Eagles are brownish with golden highlights. From a long distance, both the juvenile Bald Eagles and the Golden Eagles look very similar. I get absolutely thrilled to see Bald Eagles and was overjoyed to also see the cranes! Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture. Enjoy!