Gatineau - This bird had been around for a week but hadn't been seen since Monday. I got word this morning that it had been found again so I headed up and was rewarded for my effort along with others. Shooting conditions were tough. The light was poor and finding a hole to shoot through to avoid branches was very challenging. The bird rarely had its eyes open and when it did they were heavily shaded. It wasn't interested in people, passing dogs or Chickadees. That's what it's like when you've recently downed a meadow vole.
A follow up trip brought us repeat success with an early morning sighting. The bird does not hunt during daytime unlike its cousin the Northern Hawk Owl which we saw recently. It sleeps most of the time, waking every few hours, preening and sometimes moving to a different perch just to exercise its wings. It does not become active until after dark.
We made three attempts in recent weeks to locate this bird and on the third try we were successful. It was worth the effort and we got to see it with its eyes open. Owls look much better when they are awake.
Dee Lake Road, Lake Country BC
This was the undisputed highlight of our birding tour, taken around 10:30 PM high above Kelowna. Usually our guide is happy to have one answer him, this one appeared in his spotlight long enough for the group to view and photograph.
This was my only lifer on the tour.