This brave eagle swooped down at the perfect time to steal a hard-earned meal from two storks that were catching food.
Lourens Venter, a 39-year-old reverend, found himself all alone watching this happen. He shared the story and footage with LatestSightings.com.
“I left camp and headed to the Shingwedzi bridge, in search of something exciting. When I arrived, I scanned the banks and the riverbed for any signs of life. A sense of serenity greeted me—two magnificent saddle-billed storks were gracefully moving through the water, accompanied by an array of other water birds.”
Saddle-billed storks are clever birds that catch fish in a special way. They stand very still in the water, like statues, and keep an eye out for fish swimming by. When they see a fish, they strike super-fast with their long beaks. Their beaks are like sharp spears, and they quickly snatch the fish out of the water.
“In the midst of this serene scene, one of the storks made a catch—a small fish. With surprisingly good precision, the stork washed and placed the fish on the sand. Lourens, seized by the moment, began capturing the rather unique sight.
“Suddenly, the tranquility was gone as a fish eagle swooped down from above. The stare down began, each bird trying to appear bigger than the next. They stood; eyes locked! Lourens instinctively switched to video mode to capture the showdown. “With outstretched wings, the fish eagle took a few steps forward, trying to intimidate the stork.”
Eagle steals meal from 2 storks and flies off!
“It was tense as the eagle took a few more steps and, in a swift motion, snatched the fish from the storks. One of the storks gave chase but was not successful. The fish eagle paused for a second and then took off, soaring into the sky with its prized breakfast.”
Want to see more incrdible bird stories? Then be sure to check out the Latest Sightings bird page.
Lourens’s advice to those seeking similar encounters is to exercise patience and to resist rushing to spot the Big Five. Every corner of the park holds wonders waiting to be discovered, especially around waterholes.