A couple of nights ago RobertM and I were paddling on the Nicomekl River where we witnessed at very close distance, a bald eagle attacking a Canada goose -- in mid-air and then in the water.
The first thing we saw was a what appeared to be two geese flying low on the water, they passed Robert only a few feet beside him at an elevation level with Robert's eyes. Only after they passed did we realize that the goose was being chased by a bald eagle! I immediately turned around, changed the lens on my camera, and began taking photos. But before I could get off my first shot, the eagle had caught the goose in the air and in an instant, had forced the goose into the water. The eagle then circled around and came back towards the goose with talons fully exposed. Just at the last moment before the eagle's talons would have grabbed onto the goose, the goose dove underneath the water. The eagle then circled around again for another attack. All of this took place in mere seconds, but by this time, my camera was ready for the third attack.
The eagle (near the waterline of the boat), setting up for an attack. Notice the second eagle near the top of the photo, watching from above:
The goose keeps facing the eagle as it approaches, anxiously waiting...
With the eagle swifly approaching, the goose lowers it's head...
And at the moment when the eagle lowers it's legs to expose it's talons, the goose goes for a swim!
Score for this round: Goose 1, Eagle 0
The eagle banks hard to the right...
And briefly touches down on a piling before almost instantly...
But the goose evades the eagle by diving again!:
Final score: Goose - still alive. Eagle: still hungry.
After the last attack, the eagle landed in a nearby tree, intently watching with all it's attention focused on the goose and our approaching kayaks. The current was pushing us towards the goose and we assumed that we were too close for the eagle to risk another attack. The goose appeared to be unscathed, although we couldn't tell for certain.
I thought it was kind of cool that we had saved this goose's goose.