The weekend was pretty damn good! I had 2 separate owl encounters, which should makes anybodys weekend a big success. For today's post, I am featuring the Northern Saw-whet Owl. What an amazing creature! But...before I get into that, I must say that I owe a big thanks to Rattlin Antler, who trusted me with the secret location. Thanks sooo much Don! (He is also a new blogger, so check out his site here.)
It was an overcast morning, and traveling over 50 miles just for a chance to see him made the grim morning alittle brighter when upon arrival, I find Rattlin Antler shooting along the path. Woohoo, the owl must be there! So I set up shop and find... the shutter lagged alittle more than anybody wants in these unfavorable conditions, so a few adjustments were in order. It was a tough decision to let the background burn or have an underdeveloped subject that I would have to photoshop later. I chose to keep it slow, crossing my fingers, that 1 or 2 images would come out sharp. Luckily I had a few. I shot these shots at ISO 500, f/5.6, 1/125 sec at 220 mm focal length on my trusty 100-400mm Canon lens that just got returned from the Canon repair shop.
I called todays post "Pocket Owl" because he was such an adorable little guy! I just wanted to pluck him down and stick him in my pocket and take him home! He is one of my very favorite owls for obvious reasons. The cuter, the better. The more elusive, the better. He definately qualifies for both.
A few facts about Northern Saw-whet Owls: A small owl (6.5-9") of all types of woodlands, the Northern Saw-whet Owl can be found roosting in winter in small, dense conifer trees, sometimes even in parks and gardens. Its defense upon discovery is to sit still and not fly, leading people to perceive them as "tame."
The Northern Saw-whet Owl is a very small, short-bodied, Owl with a relatively short tail. The overly large head has no ear tufts and may appear distorted due to an asymmetrical skull. They look small when perched and tend to shuffle their feet, but in flight appear larger because of their broad wings.