When you are given the opportunity to photograph little owls in an old disused farm setting, you don`t say no, well thank to a fellow photographer I was recently given this chance, which I took with both hands, an opportunity not to be missed.
After the usual “silly o`clock” start in the morning, I was face with a drive of some 117 miles to the venue, so music up, air con on cold, away I went, the cold air con would prove to be an asset on the way home, as the day I had chosen to go, turned out to be the hottest day of the year so far – 35° – ouch.
I arrived at the venue and met my fellow photographer just after 7.30am, so hides set up, gear installed, location explained to me, then time to settle back into the hide to await action.
Well, pleasing enough, I didn’t have to wait to long, as the female little came down to check out the food that we had put out.
She came in and landed no less than 20/30 feet away from me on an old fence post and just looked straight at me, I am sure that she knew I was their, but the food she was eating herself and collecting for her babies, the temptation proved to much, she flew in and visited a number of times, spending time perched up in a large tree opposite the hides and on the roof of an old barn which was to my right, she was checking out the area for safety.
Later in the morning she started calling her young, across the yard was an old pile of logs covered by a tarpaulin, she kept taking food and flying to the rear of the log pile where we could not see her, well after what seemed an age, our patience was rewarded, one of the Little owl babies put in an appearance….
A little ball of fluff popped it`s head out only for a short time, long enough to fire off a few frames.
During the day, the female flew into the entrance to an old barn, landing on some old timbers, this proved the chance that I needed to get this shot….
It was created by exposing for the owl and setting the exposure compensation on the camera to minus 3 stops, I just love the effect it has given.
Apart from the main camera that I was using within the hide, a remote camera with a wide angle lens had been set up in an attempt to capture a bird in it`s natural surrounding’s, during the course of the day, I must admit to being a little worried as the remote camera was out in the full 35°, I though it might have cooked.
Well as can be seen my fears were unfounded, the female only visited the post a few times, but I managed to obtain the shot above, showing her in her complete natural surroundings.
Apart from a short quite spell around lunch time, the action continued through the day, providing ample shots and even some short video clips. Please click here to enjoy a short video clip.
To finish the day, the female came and landed on a wall to my left, she seemed to be taking some relief from the sun in the shade of the overhanging trees.
By 6pm, I decided to call it a day and settle down to the long, but happy journey home, this where the air con came into play, as the car had been parked in the full sun all day.
Please click on any image of a larger view.