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!!!

Monday, 17 January 2011


Just a quick post before I slope off to bed, yes I know it's early (only 7.45pm) but I'm shattered as work took me over to north Wales today (Bangor) and it was a 3.30am start and 390 mile round trip. But as I arrived back into Leicestershire it was still light (the first time in ages) so not one for turning down such an opportunity I thought I'd make the most of it. 

During the weekend when Daz and I were out looking for Barn Owl box locations we chanced upon a really good looking area near Misterton that definitely had Little Owl potential, so after a quick change that's where I headed for. 

En route I drove passed my site No 31 near to Whetstone, both owls were out, my first sighting for a couple of months. Although distant I did manage separate images of them both.

Owl No 1, taken into the sun, a typical Little Owl silhouette,

Owl No 2 was located on top of the hedgerow.

Only 10 minutes later I arrived at the potential site, and 1 minute later I located a Little Owl on top of a fence post. Get in there site No 144!!! 

It soon spotted me!

I drove the Landrover closer and spooked it, but for the better really as it landed in a nearby tree that offered some better photo opportunities.

It soon tiered of me and flew off, but I watched carefully and saw it disappear in to a crack in a tree. A quick manoeuvre and reposition then a 2 minute wait produced more close views as it popped its head out, the red eye was caused by using flash as the light had all but gone.......and then so was I!!!!!!!

Just as I was driving off the owl reemerged from the tree, followed closely by it's mate, terrific a pair but too tired and too dark for any more images, I'll will be back!

Good night ZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz!!!!!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Rid, fantastic blog and outstanding images!! You certainly have loads of Little Owls across the pond in Leicestershire and your love of your work certainly comes across loud and clear. I'll be checking back often!

    Essex, MA