I went up to Myakka State Park today to kill some time. I packed the 200mm and TC-14E thinking that it would probably be enough. Along one trail I came across a catwalk that stretched over a section of wetland. Midways I noticed a red shoulder hawk perched in an old dead tree that stood in a small pool just beyond the reeds. I attached the TC and raised the camera but it was no good, too much distance. I dropped the camera and proceeded to the end of the catwalk. Glancing back I thought, what the hell. I waded into the tall grass paying particular attention to my footing and looking for any movement (Myakka has the highest concentration of alligators of anywhere in the world or so I'm told). After what seemed like an eternity I made it to the edge of the reeds and the bird was still there. I started shooting and gradually worked my way to the edge of the pool. Several moments later I noticed a shadow passing over me. I didn't look up thinking that if I did that I would lose my balance on the tiny bit of vegetation that was semi-solid. Seconds later I peeked over the viewfinder to find a large hawk in dive mode. His wings were tucked and he was coming fast. Great, I thought... I managed to avoid the gators and cottonmouths and it's going to be the subject's mate that sends me to the hospital. Luckily, either his dive was badly planned or he just wanted to make a point. He passed over my head close enough that I could feel the wind from his wings, circled once more and landed on a branch close to the other hawk. I took a few more shots and then carefully made my exit.