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Friday, March 9, 2012

An hour with a Short-eared owl


The short-eared owl is not only a stunning bird but also a very accommodating subject. First and foremost, the bird can be photographed in the daytime, which with many owls isn't possible. The success of stalking and photographing Short-ears starts with careful observation. It can be very easy to walk past an roosting owl so keep your eyes open for a bird flying along a hedgerow or even sitting on a log or stump. This owl allowed me to "join in the hunt" for about 30 minutes. I was very careful not to make an quick movements which seemed to put the bird at ease. Yes, the light could have been  "sweeter" but they'll be other opportunities.
Male Short-eared owl hunting-

Adult short-eared showing ear tuffs
After I felt I had enough shots and the bird had had enough of me I slowly backed off and watched from a distance. A few minutes later the owl continued to hunt in the very spot I had been standing only moments before.

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