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As you might recall, I had my first 2011 encounter a few weeks ago with a Snowy in Chicago at the lakefront with some pretty good success. This time was different!
I found this guy in a farm field a few days ago, prior to this particular photoshoot, but the owl was really far away, but I knew I would be back! I came back the next day under gorgeous sunny skies...
I found him perched on a pole barn, so I thought maybe I would knock on the owners door to get permission to photograph him. They agreed. Yay me!
I was able to pull my car around and shoot from my window, and when he didn't flush with my disturbance from about 75 feet away, I decided to try to step out (slowly and without eye contact) and take my chances...
These last 2 are severely cropped but I wanted to show you the spider on its face. BONUS!!
I was very lucky that he tolerated my intrusion, so I didn't approach much closer. I was able to set up my tripod, put on my Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS with the Canon 2x teleconnector and shoot from the only angle I had at 600mm, but with the crop factor of 1.6x, I was shooting 960mm. I will always take what I can get, and sidelighting is way better than backlighting in this case! What a day to find such a rare sighting, and to shoot so close! It was one of those awesome days that come pretty few and far between! Days like this are why I spend so much time doing what I do!