Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Wild Bird Wednesday

Since this is a busy time of year I am going to repeat some of my posts that most of you probably didn't see since they were posted before I joined the Wild Bird Wednesday meme. This is from February of 2012 and it is still one of my favorite posts ... enjoy :)

I am stepping back in time today. My skies have been full of raptors, Red Tail Hawks, Cooper's Hawks and even a group of first year eagles. It makes me yearn for the time I spent in the Raptor Rehab program. Our goal was not only to help the injured raptors (most of their injuries were from encounters with man or things man made that didn't fit in their natural environment), but to educate the public on the role of the raptor in nature. They are predators, killers of prey which makes them villains to many. But their roll is to cull the weak and sick from their prey species so that the species can endure. Nature is brutal, but it is brutality that makes sense. In man's world there is brutality without reason ... One reason I turn to nature to sooth my soul. This series is a young male Great Horned Owl who was trained to the lure. He was used in flight programs so people could see the magnificence of their natural behavior ... and they are indeed magnificent. I am always open to questions or comments.

In flight toward lure (prey) ...

Make the "kill" ...

checking his surroundings ...

for other threats before addressing his prey ...

tearing at meat attached to lure ...

Once again checking his surroundings ...

On the ground they face their greatest vulnerability. The disturbance and
scent of the prey can attract other predators.
On that note I will wish you all a wonderful, family filled, laughter filled, food filled, whatever you wish for filled, peaceful Holiday.  Until next year ... (unless, of course, I spot a Snowy Owl or something :)


  1. Wow,he's a beauty. Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

  2. A great series of photos of the Owl.

  3. Love this series of photos, really show off the birds power.

  4. Wonderful images of a beautiful bird.

  5. ANDREA! These photos are really amazing, and how interesting it must have been for you to work in a raptor rehab program! I especially love this photo of the owl flying right toward you. We had that happen to us once, but it was up at our cabin at night, and an owl grabbed another bird and flew with it right over our heads. Was quite impressive, but of course we were not expecting that to happen and go no shot of it. Really though, your shot is amazing. So hope that you also have a wonderful Christmas, and aren't you glad that it is nearly here. I am ready. Blessings from texas! Jeanne

  6. I think this series of owl on prey shots is the best I have ever seen. Difficult shots with a white background but you got it perfect, in fact it is far better than a photo series, it is art.

  7. Fantastic action shots, especially the first one. Wow!

  8. Andrea, thank you so much. This is a simply amazing post. This week you, and another of my favourite bloggers have both given me owls to drool over. Such an amazing bird. As are your photos.
    If you see a Snowy Owl - you are required to put up a post immediately. Even if it interrupts your Christmas lunch.
    I hope that you and yours have a wonderful holiday full of magic and love. I am looking forward to catching up with you again next year. A lot.

  9. Fantastic shots of the owl! Very cool!

  10. What fabulous photos! I have never had the opportunity to photograph an owl of any kind.

    Enjoy your holidays. May they be healthy, prosperous and happy.
    Hugs, Edna B.

  11. Wow, awesome shots of the Great Horned Owl. What a cool experience!

  12. Seeing birds of prey this close is great. I've had a couple in the hand during banding trips.

    I hope that your government can find a path though the next few months.

    Cheers and thanks for linking to WBW - Stewart M - Melbourne

  13. Those are fabulous photos - my favorite is the one with wings spread wide coming right at you - absolutely breathtaking. Of course, that must be how the mouse or rabbit feels too!

    I didn't know you worked for a raptor rehab center, that must have been a fascinating experience.

  14. These are really wonderful!!! Reminds me of my own encounter. You may want to check out my Great Horned Owl images from my labels on side bar...pretty neat encounters, both yours and mine...very special!