Tawny Owls.

22nd June 2015
At this time of year young Tawny Owls have more or less left their nests and with some effort can sometimes be seen perched on nearby tree branches. Early this morning I was out walking in a local deciduous woodland in the hope of locating some Owls. I could hear the adults hooting as soon as I arrived. It is such a lovely iconic sound, I never tire of hearing it. Then in response I could hear the tell-tale squeaks of young birds, exactly what I was hoping for. However, that is the easy bit, locating these Owlets is quite difficult, I was standing partially hidden under a large tree for around an hour just listening for sounds and movement. Suddenly I saw an Owl fly silently across the canopy and land in a nearby tree, a young bird started to squeak immediately and I then knew where they were. I continued to wait, just scanning the foliage until at last I could see an Owlet.
I had switched off the autofocus on my lens because in the dense cover it just 'hunts' to focus if a leaf or branch blows across it. I manages a few shots of the Owlet with the foliage just blurred out around it.


Sometimes that's all you can get and I was just happy to locate one of these difficult birds.
However, I decided to give it some more time and I was rewarded with an Owlet perched out on a branch for a minute or two.


Sometime afterwards I had decided to pack-up because it had become very quiet and I thought that was it for the day, but suddenly I could hear some song birds making a commotion. This is always a sign that an Owl is out in the open, I quickly followed the disturbance and I could see an Owlet perched quite low down, probably mobbed by these songbirds. I quickly set up nearby and I was rewarded when it surprisingly flew very close and just stared at me inquisitively.


I managed to take a few frame filling shots, it was that close!! Then the adult called and the owlet flew up into the canopy. Quite a nice morning watching these lovely young birds in very nice surroundings.