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Tuesday, 8 July 2014

At Last - Some Juvenile Images! - on 30th June, 2014

With a post title that's probably got the cyber-police internet scanners going into overtime, I'll give an account of an evening out with my pal Titus that will allay all concerns!

Following the discovery of a possible Barn Owl site, reported in my previous post, the next day I asked Titus if he'd like an evening out to try and find some juvenile Little Owls to photograph, and to end up by checking out the Barn Owl location. In this latter endeavour we were successful (see previous post) although no photos were taken, but we also had some pleasing results with the juveniles too.

Our target for the juveniles was my LO site No.41. However, en route, we checked out a few sites, including No.44 where one of the owls was out, but tucked in behind foliage.


Little Owl - my Site No.44
At site No.41 we arrived and immediately spotted an adult owl sitting on a nearby telegraph pole, keeping guard. The first juvenile we spotted was sitting in dappled shade. It didn't stay long before moving out of sight.

Little Owl (juvenile No.1) - my Site No.41
From Titus's position in the car he could just see a second juvenile, so I edged the car forward for the following image.

Little Owl (juvenile No.2) - my Site No.41
Soon the first juvenile reappeared, and decided to examine one of the entrances to the nest cavity, before departing.


Little Owl (juvenile No.1) - my Site No.41
This was our first time being close to the juveniles at this site and we didn't want to cause any undue disturbance so headed off to investigate other sites. Sites 34 and 36 are adjacent to each other and we found two juveniles distantly at 34 and a bird that we couldn't make out whether it was adult or juvenile at 36, but think it was an adult. We don't always get close sightings and many of our sightings are as distant as depicted below (heavily cropped).

Little Owl - my Site No.36
As we left to go and watch the Barn Owl, a Hare was by site No.34.

Brown Hare - by my Little Owl Site No.34
Although we didn't get any Barn Owl images that evening, just quietly sitting watching the bird on its hunting forays was a totally delightful experience.

My next post will be a little different - the clue is in the header image - but there will be an owl!

Thank you for dropping by.

20 comments:

  1. Fabulous shots! I'm more than a tad jealous as I have not been out birding much this spring as my husband was in hospital for 14 weeks. Now that he's home I hope to get out more and maybe see some owls!

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    1. Thank you for your kind words. I'm so sorry to hear of your husband's illness. Please wish him a speedy recovery for me. I wish you both all the best for the future, including the sighting of some owls! - - - Richard

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  2. What a wonderfully enjoyable illustrated account of your encounters with 'your' Little Owls, the youngsters are a WOW....Great stuff Richard.

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    1. Thank you, Pete. A lot of birdwatchers complain that July is a dead month but, for me, it's just magical!

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  3. Oh my God, this is great stuff, Richard. It is perhaps the most rewarding aspect of birding to find young, and especially to photograph them. It assures us that there will be at least another generation to bring us joy. You have no idea how much I enjoy your owl adventures and how I look forward to sharing in them vicariously (for now!). I am sure that I am not alone.

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    1. Thank you, David. I'm just hoping that the owls have a good winter and breeding season next year - not just for their sake, but also because I'm looking forward to showing you and Miriam around and introducing you to them next year when you visit.

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  4. I really, really, really hate saying this as it ruins my hard man image somewhat but those juveniles as so cute!

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    1. There's no getting away from it, Doug, 'cute' is the word. They're even more cute to watch in action, rather than in still pictures, so I must sort out my camera to take movies - it's supposed to be good at it, but I've never used that facility!

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  5. Those juvenile owls are absolutely beautiful! That must be challenging to photograph owls.

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    1. Thank you, Dawn. The most difficult bit is finding them in the first place, followed by trying to catch them when they're not hiding from you.

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  6. Looks like Site 41 has turned out two great looking Juvs,great pics by the way,and two more from site 34,plus a Hare.
    Splendid job,thinking back,i would guess that you have seen more Little Owls in one day,then I've seen in a life time.
    Lucky you,well done Richard.

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    1. Thank you, John. There is a lot of luck (and time) involved - the biggest element of luck is being in an area where the Little Owls are relatively common when compared to other parts of UK. Virtually all my wildlife watching time is spent focussed on owls, with other wildlife being incidental to that activity.

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  7. You have some amazing shots of the owls. I'd say you hit the jackpot here!

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    1. Thank you, Gail. I was delighted with this session, but I'm hoping that there's better to come!

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  8. Hi Richard!
    Brilliant photos. This bird is so cute and a Hare too. Nice to look at these great photos :-)
    Thanks for your visit on our blog. The first statement of the Scarlet Darter in UK was in 1995. Here (http://www.british-dragonflies.org.uk/species/scarlet-darter) is the map of the statements this species in UK.
    Greetings!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :-)

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    1. Thank you, Piotr and Michał, for your kind words.

      There's a long way to go before Scarlet Darter becomes established in UK. Six sightings in nineteen years doesn't give me much hope of seeing one here!!! ;-}

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  9. Excellent post mate, glad you are now reaping your rewards with the juveniles!!

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    1. Thank you, Paul. I love this time of year!

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