2012-07-05 Owls

  Yesterday evening, rather than hanging around for fireweorks, we headed down to to St Vincent's School For Boys (Google Maps link) (and, though there was some traffic in and out to a section I've never been to, I'm never sure what the actual state of that property is, given that some of the buildings there are in pretty harsh disrepair. We got there just after sundown, so it was still relatively light, but the truth is the owls came out a little bit later, and a flash was the only way to get the pictures. There was one other car full of people there wildlife watching. At the entrance to the property there's a sign saying that anyone found on the property outside of usual business hours who isn't bla bla bla is assumed to be trespassing. I can't help thinking that with a little coordination of all of the people we know who like to go cruise slowly around the grounds watching the wildlife that they could build a rather good security force...

  My Canon D60 wasn't working, we suspect that the many many years old batteries are shot, so Phil loaned us his tricked out Nikon I-don't-even-wanna-know, but I put my 550EX flash on it. Being Canon and Nikon they didn't talk to each other, so all of these are manual focus (no flash assist light, and the camera was set up so that it had shutter lock-up and some other settings that weren't good for birding) and I wasn't thinking about the flash and focal length, so I could have stopped a bunch of these down for better focus, and didn't. Practice makes better. As the twilight waned, we stopped by one field where there was this little rabbit, and used him for flash calibration. We were kinda hoping that one of the owls swooping overhead would come down and munch the little guy, but no such luck.

There are owls everywhere, although seemed like there were a few fewer out than when we went later on the evening of the 3rd, but...


The highlight of the evening was definitely watching these little birds get fed. Note in this sequence that one of 'em has a rodent hanging out of his mouth after the parent leaves.


And a bunch more of that same group, which we watched (and were watched by) for a while.


Category: Dan Lyke life