Hi and welcome to my Blog, my name is Paul Riddle and I live in south Leicestershire, UK. Back in August 2007 my quest began to locate as many local Little Owl territories as possible. The driving force was a reported decline in the uk numbers so I thought I would do my bit and conduct a study in my area. After 7 years and countless hours out in the field I have detected over 200 different sites. With a thirst for a greater understanding of the owls a more comprehensive monitoring and nest box programme then commenced. This also now includes monitoring the local and very sparse population of Barn Owls, please pop back occasionally and catch up with the life and times of my owls and any other wildlife that I come across. I hope you enjoy your visit!!!

Saturday, 20 March 2010


Managed to get a few hours out this afternoon and after visiting 10 local sites the running tally of owls seen or heard was.................ZERO!!!!!! I know the weather was real crappy with the wind and driving rain but you'd of thought little owls were made of tougher stuff than this, what a bunch of whimps!!! Apart from that is............ a pair of tough little blighters over at Whetstone!

These guys saved the day for me, I'd only been waiting around 10 minutes when the first bird poked its head out of the nest hole.

This guy was made of tough stuff, he soon came out and braved it in the wind and rain, he was the owl equivelent of Rambo!

And then things got even better proving every cloud does have a silver lining, his other half came out to brave the elements too!

The pair of them moved around the tree for a few minutes offering some good views,

Concidering the poor conditions, low light levels and high ISO's some of the images came out ok?

Site 31, Whetstone - Crossways Farm


  1. Paul,
    I'm a regular reader of your BLOG and I'm amazed at how many Little Owls you've found in Leics. I've only seen a few myself, despite living, walking and fishing in the county since I was a boy (40 years ago).

    However, I did regularly see Little Owls in the area of SP61849670 a few years ago, so this might be a good place to look for you 100th site if you haven't already checked it.

    Best regards


  2. Cheers for that Keith, I have had a look on my map at the grid ref you mentioned and it appears to be near clifton bridge on the canal at kilby......is this correct?

  3. Another absolutely cracking set of images Paul!! I took one look at the weather and said "no way!!". Just goes to show that there will always be one or two birds that buck the trend, and it's always worth a try!!

  4. Hi Paul,

    Yes that's right - there's a couple of rough fields on either side of the canal immediately east of the bridge, with lots of mature / old trees for the owls to nest in.