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, 8 January 2012

Mad Owl and me!

My first post of the year has been somewhat later than I expected, free time has been a premium since getting back to work after the festive season, then there has been the crappy weather and to compound it all I've had a very dodgy left shoulder that needed an operation, hence no driving!!!
Anyway, prior to the op and before my return to work after the xmas break I did manage to get out for the first time in 2012 for a few hours, the quarry.......yes you've guessed it owls!
It had been a while since I visited one of my SEO sites, so that's where I went, the aim of the day was to get an image of a "perched SEO". Surprisingly upon arrival I was the only observer there? I sat in the car surveying the area for 30 minutes and nothing! So against my better judgement I decided to have a walk around the whole complex, at a leisurely pace it should take around an hour or so. This I believed was my best chance to encounter an owl in the more sheltered areas? I'd only been walking for 10 minutes when the wimp in me gave up,  it was ridiculous how strong the winds were, any owl that was up in this weather would be nuts!

Getting back to the sanctuary of the car was pure heaven, on went the engine and then the heaters at full blast. I was sitting there enjoying the warmth when an owl was sighted! It was way off  in the distance and it was perched!! Not wanting to miss the opportunity I rattled off a few shots, it was too far away for the "perched shot" I was after so instead I grabbed a short piece of video.

Just click on the arrow to view.

The owl then duly obliged by taking off and flying in my direction, it made one fly past where I managed this sequence of images. Not good quality, but my first SEO of 2012.

With hindsight it shouldn't have been a surprise that I was the only one there viewing, it was dull, wet, cold and very very windy, just perfect for owl watching.....NOT!!!!


  1. Still nice shots mate..............

  2. I know what you mean about time being at a premium Paul - I've not been out at all for weeks!

    Cracking video - the 7D has a really sharp video capability, and very well captured. What a lovely flight. Cracking stills too.

  3. Yep, still getting good images,continuing from last year, last one is my favourite

  4. Guauuu! preciosas fotos de un precioso animal.

  5. At least you found an owl, Paul (and got some nise images too!)! I was foolish enough to go looking for SEOs last Tuesday when it was really windy and cold. Unlike you I was daft enough to stand out in it on top of a knoll for two hours, and didn't see an owl for the first time since the beginning of November. I felt dreadful afterwards, with my hands being really painful for about an hour after I got home.

  6. Hola compañero, que maravilla de blog, enhorabuena, me encanta. unas fotos preciosas ya te sigo. Un saludo.