When asked, which is your favorite bird, I usually say the one in my viewfinder. However, when I reviewed my Lightroom catalog, there was one family that rose to the top with the most photo: Raptors. Birds are descendants of dinosaurs and it can be seen in the raptors. In March 2018, we had a late snow and when I found this Bald Eagle in the Washoe Valley I was able to position myself to have the snow covered Carson Range in the background. It was bright this mid-morning so I could stop down on the f-stop to f/6.3 and still keep the ISO low at 250 while using my go to shutter speed of 1/1250.

Featured Photo: Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus), Washoe Valley, WAS (NV)  EQ: D800, 500mm f/4 Taken: 4-20-2018 at 10:46  Settings: 500mm, 1/1250s, f/6.3, ISO250, 1/3EV Conditions: sunny

Featured Photo: Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus), Washoe Valley, WAS (NV)

EQ: D800, 500mm f/4 Taken: 4-20-2018 at 10:46

Settings: 500mm, 1/1250s, f/6.3, ISO250, 1/3EV Conditions: sunny

Steller's Sea-Eagle (Haliaeetus pelagicus), Zhupanova River, KAM (RU), 06-28-2017  This was a very moving encounter on my trip to the Russian Far East. We were able to get so close that at times I couldn’t fit the entire Eagle in the frame (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/4.5, ISO1250, +.3EV).

Steller's Sea-Eagle (Haliaeetus pelagicus), Zhupanova River, KAM (RU), 06-28-2017

This was a very moving encounter on my trip to the Russian Far East. We were able to get so close that at times I couldn’t fit the entire Eagle in the frame (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/4.5, ISO1250, +.3EV).

Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis), Swan Lake, WAS (NV), 01-04-2019  Another close encounter with this immature Red-tailed. I really like how the hawk was perched on the fence post (D500 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/4.5, ISO220, +.3EV).

Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis), Swan Lake, WAS (NV), 01-04-2019

Another close encounter with this immature Red-tailed. I really like how the hawk was perched on the fence post (D500 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/4.5, ISO220, +.3EV).

Ferruginous Hawk (Buteo regalis), Washoe Lake SP, WAS (NV), 01-09-2019  I found a pair of Ferruginous Hawk on the east side of Washoe Lake on the top of power line poles. I was able to capture this one as it took flight (D500 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1600s, f/5.6, ISO320, +.3EV).

Ferruginous Hawk (Buteo regalis), Washoe Lake SP, WAS (NV), 01-09-2019

I found a pair of Ferruginous Hawk on the east side of Washoe Lake on the top of power line poles. I was able to capture this one as it took flight (D500 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1600s, f/5.6, ISO320, +.3EV).

American Kestrel (Falco sparverius), Diamond Creek Pond, WAS (NV), 11-29-2016  This encounter was at the end of my walk around the Diamond Creek Pond. I had put my camera away when I saw this Kestrel in the top of a conifer. I pulled out my camera and was able to capture this moment. Why do some ranchers and farmers think raptors are pests (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/5.6, ISO180, +.3EV)?

American Kestrel (Falco sparverius), Diamond Creek Pond, WAS (NV), 11-29-2016

This encounter was at the end of my walk around the Diamond Creek Pond. I had put my camera away when I saw this Kestrel in the top of a conifer. I pulled out my camera and was able to capture this moment. Why do some ranchers and farmers think raptors are pests (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/5.6, ISO180, +.3EV)?

Osprey (Pandion haliaetus), Washoe Valley, WAS (NV), 07-06-2018  I watched this Osprey hunting over Washoe Lake and the nearby wetlands for about a half hour. This guy finally found its prize (D800 with 500mm f/4 lens, 500mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/4, ISO100, +.3EV).

Osprey (Pandion haliaetus), Washoe Valley, WAS (NV), 07-06-2018

I watched this Osprey hunting over Washoe Lake and the nearby wetlands for about a half hour. This guy finally found its prize (D800 with 500mm f/4 lens, 500mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/4, ISO100, +.3EV).

Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura), Pyramid Lake - Willows, WAS (NV), 09-07-2016  Early in the morning I arrived at the Willows at the NW end of Pyramid Lake. There were 10 Turkey Vultures and I was able to get very close to this adult but there were also immature in the area too (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/5, ISO250, +.3EV).

Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura), Pyramid Lake - Willows, WAS (NV), 09-07-2016

Early in the morning I arrived at the Willows at the NW end of Pyramid Lake. There were 10 Turkey Vultures and I was able to get very close to this adult but there were also immature in the area too (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/5, ISO250, +.3EV).

Rough-legged Hawk (Buteo lagopus), Minden CBC, DOU (NV), 12-30-2017  During the Minden CBC in Douglas County, I was very lucky to have a Rough-legged Hawk fly right over me (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1000s, f/6.3, ISO125, +.3EV).

Rough-legged Hawk (Buteo lagopus), Minden CBC, DOU (NV), 12-30-2017

During the Minden CBC in Douglas County, I was very lucky to have a Rough-legged Hawk fly right over me (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1000s, f/6.3, ISO125, +.3EV).

Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo lineatus), Swanton Rd at Last Chance, SCZ (CA), 12-07-2018  The Red-shoulder Hawk is fairly common in Santa Cruz County (CA) but in NW Nevada they are hard to find. I was able to grab this photo even through the branches by using single point focus (D800 with 500mm f/4 lens, 500mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/5.6, ISO320, +.3EV).

Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo lineatus), Swanton Rd at Last Chance, SCZ (CA), 12-07-2018

The Red-shoulder Hawk is fairly common in Santa Cruz County (CA) but in NW Nevada they are hard to find. I was able to grab this photo even through the branches by using single point focus (D800 with 500mm f/4 lens, 500mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/5.6, ISO320, +.3EV).

Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos), Sheldon NWR, HUM (NV), 12-21-2017  On the way to the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge CBC, I stopped for a large raptor on a power line pole. I had just enough time to grab my camera as this Golden Eagle took flight (D800 with 500mm f/4 lens, 500mm focal length, 1/1000s, f/5, ISO140, +.3EV).

Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos), Sheldon NWR, HUM (NV), 12-21-2017

On the way to the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge CBC, I stopped for a large raptor on a power line pole. I had just enough time to grab my camera as this Golden Eagle took flight (D800 with 500mm f/4 lens, 500mm focal length, 1/1000s, f/5, ISO140, +.3EV).

Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis), Rancho San Rafael, WAS (NV), 1-26-2016  This pair of Red-tailed Hawk were in the middle of their mating display. It’s not often you can find them displaying close enough to get a decent photo (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/5, ISO250, +.3EV).

Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis), Rancho San Rafael, WAS (NV), 1-26-2016

This pair of Red-tailed Hawk were in the middle of their mating display. It’s not often you can find them displaying close enough to get a decent photo (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/5, ISO250, +.3EV).

Cooper's Hawk (Accipiter cooperii), Mont Pelier, WAS (NV), 08-25-2018  This pair of Cooper’s Hawks were perched on my fence time to time for a couple of days. This photo was taken soon after sunrise (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/640s, f/5, ISO640, +.3EV).

Cooper's Hawk (Accipiter cooperii), Mont Pelier, WAS (NV), 08-25-2018

This pair of Cooper’s Hawks were perched on my fence time to time for a couple of days. This photo was taken soon after sunrise (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/640s, f/5, ISO640, +.3EV).

Prairie Falcon (Falco mexicanus), Empire Ranch, CAR (NV), 10-20-2017  Another close encounter was with this Prairie Falcon as it was approaching a landing in a nearby tree (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1000s, f/6.3, ISO500, +.3EV).

Prairie Falcon (Falco mexicanus), Empire Ranch, CAR (NV), 10-20-2017

Another close encounter was with this Prairie Falcon as it was approaching a landing in a nearby tree (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1000s, f/6.3, ISO500, +.3EV).

Swainson's Hawk (Buteo swainsoni), UNR AG Fields, WAS (NV), 09-12-2017  Swainson’s Hawks have been nesting in the Reno area along the University of Reno Agricultural Fields. Raptors love using the power line poles (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/5.6, ISO250, +.3EV).

Swainson's Hawk (Buteo swainsoni), UNR AG Fields, WAS (NV), 09-12-2017

Swainson’s Hawks have been nesting in the Reno area along the University of Reno Agricultural Fields. Raptors love using the power line poles (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1250s, f/5.6, ISO250, +.3EV).

Barn Owl (Tyto alba), Swan Lake, WAS (NV), 01-08-2019  I capture this Barn Owl shortly after it dove into a field and it then flew off with a vole. It flew into a patch of willows and short thereafter and returned to hunting in the same field (D500 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1600s, f/5.6, ISO1000, +.3EV).

Barn Owl (Tyto alba), Swan Lake, WAS (NV), 01-08-2019

I capture this Barn Owl shortly after it dove into a field and it then flew off with a vole. It flew into a patch of willows and short thereafter and returned to hunting in the same field (D500 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1600s, f/5.6, ISO1000, +.3EV).

Northern Harrier (Circus cyaneus), Rancho San Rafael Park, WAS (NV), 12-12-2016  The Northern Harrier is fairly common in the Reno/Carson City area. If there is a marsh or field near water you will find them. They fly low so they are a nice subject to photograph close up (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1600s, f/5.6, ISO320, +.3EV).    Your comments are welcomed and if you have any questions about these photos or any other leave me a message.

Northern Harrier (Circus cyaneus), Rancho San Rafael Park, WAS (NV), 12-12-2016

The Northern Harrier is fairly common in the Reno/Carson City area. If there is a marsh or field near water you will find them. They fly low so they are a nice subject to photograph close up (D7200 with 500mm f/4 lens, 750mm focal length, 1/1600s, f/5.6, ISO320, +.3EV).

Your comments are welcomed and if you have any questions about these photos or any other leave me a message.

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