A good friend (Mike) had done all the work and has already found three different Great Horned Owl (GHO) nests. He invited me to tag along this morning. After seeing the killer shots he has been getting, getting up at 3:45 AM to make the drive and be there at first light was no problem. Funny I struggle on mornings to get up some morning for work, but yet I can get up before the alarm when it is fun!
We got to the first nest and saw both parents, but no clear shots. I could only see the little white tuft of a babies head. I was working to get a better angle, and Mike said, come on, it only gets better!
So off we went to GHO nest #2. This nest is in a small town in Iowa and the owls were not bothered by people at all. Could have photographed them out the car window. The nest was back lit and lighting was tough!
On we went to the third nest. Mike stated that this pair of owls has been nesting in the same area for the last three season. Mike was able to call them right in. He has yet to find the nest because the owls were in protective mode and kept flying and trying to lead us away.
This male was way more vocal, and looked skinnier too.He kept calling and then flying to his next perch about every 5 minutes. I missed 3 or 4 chances at flight shots. Finally when he lit on a clear branch, I just locked on him and wasn’t going to take an eye out of the camera until he launched.
Not sure what will get in front of my lens next, but I can finally cross GHO off my list! A once in a lifetime experience. I think part of the reason Mike invited me is he knows I am moving to Texas in the next month and won’t be around to put extra pressure on his nest locations!
Life is good and I am blessed!
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