Thursday, October 29, 2009

A bit of a 'owler

So far this week we've had photos from Chicago, Venezuela and England so lets keep moving and head to Florida (I've had a busy year!). This is one of 3 owl species I saw in Florida's Everglades National Park. The other two were barn and burrowing owls, the latter of which is apparently very rare in the park itself. All three species were seen from the road at night (two were very narrowly avoided in fact) so we're not talking high intensity fieldcraft to see these (I was looking for something else/concentrating on driving at the time). I didn't see the other two species (GHO and Screech). Anyway this is a barred owl.

barred owl

This should be familiar to many nature blog fans because some lucky chap has them in his garden and posts awesome shots of them all the time. I however have never seen one before so was absolutely delighted to bag a lifer in unexpected fashion - I got out of my car to check on something and heard this guy on the wires by my head. Luckily I was packing a flash gun of reasonable prowess so I fired off a couple of shots. Only this one was in focus and it has the obvious flaw that the owl has turned his head to check something else out but I didn't want to zap the guy repeatedly so this will have to do. The flash/low light combination seem to have washed out the colours which I think gives him an awesome ghostly ethereal kind of look - very similar to how these guys appear when they glide across the road above your car.

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