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!!!

Sunday, 17 April 2011

A lack of power!

A couple of nights ago I located my latest Little Owl site No 166, at the time of location it was far too dark to obtain an image of any quality, so tonight whilst on my way to the Wistow Barn Owl site I made a point of stopping off to see if it was still around.

Luck would have it that it was there again sitting next to its nest hole and in some good light too. I'd got myself well prepared with the camera settings as I knew I'd only have a few fleeting seconds to nail the image. As the nest tree is on the left hand side of a very busy road all I could do is wait for a gap in the traffic, quickly pull up along side, open the passenger window and rattle off a few handheld shots. 

Considering all the handicaps I was up against I am well chuffed with the final outcome, below. 

I finally arrived at the Barn Owl site around 7.15pm, the objective for tonight was a flighty image, and I so nearly got it! I knew that due to a lagging effect with the flash I'd only have the chance to take just the one frame whilst it was in flight. After a 45 minute wait the moment came and the flash didn't go off, I couldn't believe it, please no not flat batteries!!!!!!!!

After reviewing the "so nearly" image I was pleased with my timing but it was so dark! All I could do was try and work some wonders with the post processing and attempt  to recover what could have been a really nice image, you can only do so much with a crappy image and this is the result........dohhhhhh!!!!  

After the owl landed on the stump it sat there for a few seconds looking around, I tried the flash again and would you credit it the dam thing worked this time, just the once!


  1. Another set of cracking images Paul, all your hard work is reaping some gret results, superb stuff.

  2. Cheers guys, kind words!