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!!!

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Washing in the rain!

Rid you must be bonkers going out in this, I thought to myself as I made my way to the "big field" in South Wigston, it was absolutely pouring it down with rain, the light was really poor, surely no sane Little Owl would be mad enough to venture out in this..........or would they???

I parked up the Landrover in between the nest tree and some very attractive hunting posts (attractive to the owls that is) and waited. The rain was so heavy I couldn't see out of the windows, so it was on with the de-mister and windscreen wipers, five minutes later I spotted my first owl (he must be as mad as me being out in this!!!).

What I witnessed next was truly remarkable, the owl in question sat on a fence post, wings outstretched having a bath for a good 10 minutes!!!! Well of all the different and unusual antics that I have seen Little Owls perform this was a new one to me. 

Double click on any of the below images for larger and more detailed version.

After the rain bath the owl got to work looking for worms on the grass. it didn't take him long to find his juicy wriggly morsel and he flew with it onto a post I had previously positioned. Moments later he was off again, worm in beak towards his nest hole.

There was no messing about, he flew straight to the cavity, popped his head in and fed the chick. Not the greatest image but I uploaded it because if you look carefully you can see the chick just inside the hole, no doubt waiting for his next feed.

I then moved on along the field and up to site 77, today an owl was out.

I am really in a rush whilst writing this as I am suppose to be going out for a curry........10 minutes ago!!!! So I'm gunna have to cut loose and go, but before I  dash off, I would like to leave you with this final image of a very wet and bedraggled Little Owl, an image I am very very pleased with...........possibly my best so far????

1 comment:

  1. An absolutely brilliant set of images, Paul! But that last one is just magic! Well done - I hope you enjoyed the curry!