The American Bald Eagle has been called beautiful, powerful, sacred, a thief, scavenger, and (in the words of Ben Franklin), “…a bird of bad moral character.” But what I’m most impressed by, as I get to know this raptor, is its fearlessness and undaunted perseverance.
Bald Eagles that survive bone-shattering auto accidents, poisoning, unethical hunters, starvation, attacking eagles, even having half their beak blown off trying to protect their young from a “cherry bomb” lobbed into the nest—those survivors simply move on. They find a new mate if they’ve lost one, they build a new nest if theirs has crashed to the ground, and they have another brood of eaglets in spite of the tragic death of previous offspring. And without anthropomorphizing too much, they truly are fearless—it’s integral to them; they fear nothing and no one. So between having no fear, and not becoming discouraged by difficulty, danger, or disappointment, I’d say their character is to be admired.
Brown Bears at Brooks Falls – Katmai National Park, Alaska, USA. And, well… some salmon, of course (in the water). And no doubt some bald eagles (hidden in the trees across the river). Mom is going to show her cubs how to fish. They will eat solid food early in life, but it will take time for them to learn how to catch fish. Plants, berries, insects are fairly easy to catch, but fish are trickier. The smaller size of this art makes it a great accent piece for wall, shelf, mantelpiece, or table.
Watching a bald eagle taking a splash bath is pure entertainment. They wade in about “waist high”, look to the left, look to the right, then face forward and slam their stern face into the water and splash around. Then up they come to shake it off, and slam their face back down. I don’t know how they can do this without ever cracking a smile. My recent painting, “Wilderness Day Spa,” is 12″ x 9″, acrylic on hardboard. From a video by Sasse Photo used with permission.
I met this fellow some years ago at a Big Cat Rescue, only to learn much later that the animals (about 300 of them) were being abused and neglected. Today, the previous owner is gone, a new organization has taken over the care of the cats, and many of them have now been moved to more suitable forever homes. Fortunately for me, I have photos of him, so wherever he is today, this painting is in honor of him. As one of my collectors said when he saw this, “The Bengal Tiger is one of God’s most beautiful creatures.” Agreed.