Close Encounters Of The Bird Kind

The owl is letting me get closer! This time I found him carefully camouflaged in a tree about a third of a mile from where I saw him this morning.

I was following this Kestrel when I saw the owl.

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18 Responses to Close Encounters Of The Bird Kind

  1. RodT says:

    I can’t help but be struck by the colour of the owl and how it blends so perfectly with the tree behind it. Truly beautiful bird and great pictures! Thanks!

  2. Extreme Hiatus says:

    They learn. Sounds like this one has already learned that you are no threat. That may be because that area has frequent non-threatening human activity which that just makes wildlife more comfortable with people in general.

    You can speed up this learning process by wearing the same external clothes – so you always look the same to the owl – and by having encounters where you don’t even look/stare at it… predators stare at things and birds and other animals get that. Of course that means you would need to skip some photo ops too… but it looks like there’s no need for that step with this owl (or the Kestrels).

    Anyhow, lucky you to find such a fearless GH Owl and, again, very nice photos!

  3. Billy G. says:

    This is mating season for GHO’s. Look carefully in the surrounding trees for a female sitting on a nest.

    • tonyheller says:

      I know approximately where the nest is. He has tried to lead me away from it the last two mornings. These pictures were taken very close to the Red Tailed Hawk nest I photographed under construction last spring.

      • KevinK says:

        Around here in Upstate New York Great Horned Owls don’t dare come out in the daytime because they risk being attacked by Red Tailed Hawks. Likewise the hawks hunker down at dusk.

        There are about equal numbers of Red Tailed Hawks and GHO hereabouts, they invented the concept of the “time share” habitat.

        Great photos.

  4. KevinK says:

    Also, check out the Tawny Frog Mouth of Australia;

    https://whyevolutionistrue.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/w-longmore-mv-tawny-frogmouth.jpg

    An amazing camouflage job, yes there is a bird in the above picture…

    • KevinK says:

      Even I missed it at first, there are TWO birds in the above photo. This mostly gray bird lives in mostly gray trees and has learned to mimic the tree branches.

      Cheers, KevinK.

  5. Philip DiMarzio says:

    Your pics have me considering adding the P900 to my selection.

  6. AndyG55 says:

    Man, That is one GRUMPY looking owl !

    Great pictures, as always :-)

  7. Jeffk says:

    Tony if you come to Fla in springtime, visit the marsh bird rookery at St. Augustine Alligator Farm. You can see nesting birds up close over alligators protecting them from snakes and other predators. Lemme know when you’re coming and I’ll join you (see mine at http://www.capturimage.com/Animals/Proof-picks-from-May-2016-at/n-xhSWD2 )

  8. gregole says:

    Magnificent animals. Great shots – God I hope and pray they stay away from those infernal wind-turbines.

  9. Joe says:

    That owl is beautiful

  10. AndyG55 says:

    Tony,

    Maybe you could consider putting together a calendar of the “best” of each months photos.

    You would have several sales from me (Australian holidays listed of course) almost immediately.

    and I’m sure MANY in the USwould support your photographic efforts .

  11. Larry Geiger says:

    Nice. Just very nice.

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