Osprey in flight

2021/03/28 – Raptors in flight

Today we have 4 raptors caught in the air. I have often tried with mixed success to catch birds in flight. Either they have been too far, or too blurry, or a problem with exposure because the sun was in the wrong angle… you name a possible photographic issue, I am pretty confident that I will have an example in my collection. Fortunately, once in a while, I get that golden shot which makes me very happy. So here is my selection coming out of the last 3 months.


Raptors are something else, as they hang around looking for a prey. They hover almost stationary sometimes, or they make wide circles, progressively moving the circle in a pattern to cover huge amount of ground. I have seen them dive in for a prey, but never been able to catch them in the act. It’s always too late by the time I get there. Either they were gone, or I would see them flying away, and I could tell they had something dangling in their claws. But they were too far away to take decent pictures.

In this post, we have an osprey, a Peregrine falcon, a red tail hawk, and a turkey vulture.
I have covered the osprey in previous posts:

and the red tail hawk in this unusual sequence:

I also once posted a pic of a turkey vulture flying over lake Hodges, but so far nothing of the peregrine falcon.
It is a small raptor, but what’s interesting is that in the last month I have seen this Peregrine falcon take a liking to the dead tree across the street, which I can watch from my office window. So, I will probably prepare a post dedicated to that particular bird in the near future.




  1. Crystal says:

    Wow, these raptor shots are awesome! Especially cool with the sunlight streaming through the red tail of the red tail hawk 😮

    • Sansay says:

      Thanks! glad you like them 😀
      That particular shot, right, I had to bend over backward as he flew right over my head…
      I thought I would hurt my back

  2. Lana says:

    Ah I love turkey vultures. They are one of my favorite birds, and they are such successful survivors. We get them here too. In fact I caught one eating what looked like a possum on one of my walks recently. Waiting for the rest of the body to finish decaying so I can claim the skull. I was wondering… would you be okay with me using your photos as reference for my art? I was considering making a collection of Californian bird illustrations. I would credit you of course, when I share them.

    • Sansay says:

      wowahhh… the honor of being one of your sources of inspiration is just too tempting. Please go right ahead.
      And don’t hesitate to ask me if you are looking for something in particular. Who knows, I have a lot of unpublished pictures.

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