Barn Owls – Brief Encounters

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Towards the end of November the weather was settled with easterly winds and dry conditions.I discovered that a local barn owl was coming out and hunting early afternoon on a regular basis.I visited half a dozen times and was rewarded with some great opportunities for the camera.The earliest the owl came out was around 1.30pm.I made sure I was in position around that time and with the camera set up ready.

I had previously placed two posts in the field the barn owl regularly used hoping it might land on the posts giving some excellent opportunities for portrait shots.The barn owl did quarter the small rough field but never stayed long but would return sometimes and a couple of times it did catch a vole and returned to its roost in nearby farm buildings.I was stationed in the car at the roadside and the barn owl ignored the car when it came out to hunt.

I couldn’t believe my luck when the barn owl used both my perches long enough for me to get some nice images.I had tried this tactic once before and found that barn owls will regularly use perches if placed in suitable locations.The weather and light throughout my visits was perfect enabling me to obtain some super shots some of which are shown below.It was also ideal for flight shots with fast shutter speeds being the norm with the great light.Hope you enjoy the images below and I have many more which I may post at a later date.Thanks for looking in an hopefully I will return to the owls when the current very wet conditions improve.

 

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Brian Rafferty

Brian Rafferty

I am based in Preston. Lancashire. This central location enables me to travel easily to a wide variety of habitats in the North of England. I tend these days not to travel very far as I find that there is plenty to see not very far from home. On my own doorstep are a wonderful variety of habitats - natural woodlands, open fells and hill country, unspoilt river valleys and I have easy access to the delights of the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales National Parks. As you will see from my bird images much time is spent at the wonderful coastal sites forming part of Morecambe Bay and the Ribble Estuary e.g. Marshside and Leighton Moss. In recent years Digital Photography has taken over from Video and as time has moved on I have acquired more and more equipment - as you do!! I use Nikon Camera Equipment and currently use a Nikon D200 for general work and a D300 specifically for bird photography. The D300m is usually coupled to a 500mm F4 lens which has dramatically changed the quality of images that I am now able to obtain. I am enjoying being able to post images on Flickr and share the rewards of our wonderful interests with the rest of the world!!!

Brian Rafferty

Brian Rafferty

I am based in Preston. Lancashire. This central location enables me to travel easily to a wide variety of habitats in the North of England. I tend these days not to travel very far as I find that there is plenty to see not very far from home. On my own doorstep are a wonderful variety of habitats - natural woodlands, open fells and hill country, unspoilt river valleys and I have easy access to the delights of the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales National Parks. As you will see from my bird images much time is spent at the wonderful coastal sites forming part of Morecambe Bay and the Ribble Estuary e.g. Marshside and Leighton Moss. In recent years Digital Photography has taken over from Video and as time has moved on I have acquired more and more equipment - as you do!! I use Nikon Camera Equipment and currently use a Nikon D200 for general work and a D300 specifically for bird photography. The D300m is usually coupled to a 500mm F4 lens which has dramatically changed the quality of images that I am now able to obtain. I am enjoying being able to post images on Flickr and share the rewards of our wonderful interests with the rest of the world!!!

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