I am absolutely thrilled to get that good of picture (the crop) of our great horned owl!
Oh, the adrenaline rush on that one!
Yeah, I know, that darn branch across his face, but the best I could do in the situation.
Owls are fairly common around here, just never get the opportunity to take a pic because we do not see them during the day and they are very seldom in our backyard like this one was.
I'll be on the lookout for more photo shoot opportunities, as this one seems to be hanging around here more than usual.
I always feel so privileged when any of the more "elusive" creatures allow me to take a picture of them, especially owls, hawks, any of the big birds. This guy tolerated me much longer than I thought he would, and I got more pics and got closer up to him than I had hoped.
I looked down at my feet for a second (was trying to move silently, not crunch on snow and dead leaves) and when I looked up again he was gone. Silent in flight and no trace of him as if he/she just disappeared. Weird feeling.
I usually go to enature or cornell for info. Can listen to their hoot and screech there.
But here are a few more good references for great horns that I found googling...
The great horned owl spends the majority of its time hunting. The owl can see during the day, but has even better vision at night. The silent flight of this owl can be attributed to its loose, soft feathers. These two factors, and the fact that its prey is most active at night make it most advantageous for the great horned owl to hunt at night.
Take a look at those claws, whoa...
talons and feet, captive individual
Bubo (a horned owl) virginianus (from Virginia)
See also Owls of North Dakota
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