This morning I met up with a friend to photograph a Great Horned Owl in a new area for me. Well, we didn’t find the GHO, but we found and photographed a Barred Owl.
Afterwards, I initially planned to go to an area where I have photographed a different Barred Owl in the past, but since I got some photos already I decided to go find “my” Great Horned Owl.
I found her after a short walk, but once again she was hard to spot. If I took one step backwards I couldn’t see her. I was actually so close to her when I spotted her that I backtracked a distance to get my tripod and camera out of my backpack without disturbing her.
I walked back to the spot where I first saw her and took a shot just to show all the branches in front of her. Then I walked further away from her and uphill for my second obstructed shot.
It appeared she wasn’t bothered by my presence as I watched her through my binoculars. Once I got those shots I had to make my way 180 degrees to get to the front of her, but walking in a wide half circle. Now I was about 20 yards away with an unobstructed view of her except a small twig off to one side of her face. I move my tripod about a foot to my right and that solved the problem.
I have photographed this same owl several times this past week or so and each time I’ve been wearing the same outerwear. I don’t know if she recognizes me or what, but she never became alarmed or fully alert by my presence and now she has an unobstructed view of me.
We got to spend some quality time together today. Well, actually she slept for 65 minutes while I just stood around waiting for her to wake up, then for 10 minutes I got to watch her waking up routine. She open and shut her mouth several times, she would scratch her face with her feet, she began rotating her neck faster and raster going almost completely around, she would stretch her legs and wings. I found her routine very fascinating.