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, 23 June 2012

We got there in the end.

As per my previous post, Ben Andrew was visiting Leicestershire today, he was desperate for some Little Owl images and I was the man to help him...... apparently!! It was agreed that Ben would be at my place for 7am, not the earliest of starts but I was pretty confident that my star site would produce the goods no matter what time we visited.

Ben has been waiting quite a while to visit and I think he was really chomping at the bit because a late text message on Friday asking if it was OK if he came earlier!!! I was OK with that and we re-arranged for 6am, surprise surprise Ben was even early than that! After a quick catch up and a sweet cup of tea we loaded up the Landrover and off we set.........NOT!

The beast was dead, no matter what we tried she wasn't going to start, the battery was good and dead!Ben was holding up but I could sense his disappointment, if I'd have been going out on my own I would have gave up and gone back to bed, but beings as we'd had this day planned for such a long time I felt compelled to keep trying. As a last resort we drove up to the local retail park where I bought some new jump leads and just in case a bit more fuel. Finally the beast came to life, but it was now 7.30am.......so much for the early start!

Anyhow, after that duff start things got better, the owls at the "mega site" came up trumps and a good two to three hours of excellent views were had. 

Ben took that many images I was amazed, I am not kidding his camera sounded like a machine gun going off at times (it didn't bother the owls though). I reckon I took around 200 images, I reviewed and deleted any rubbish as I went along. Ben deleted none, he was far too busy snapping away and I wouldn't be surprised if he took over 600 images. Not sure if he had any keepers (surely so after taking that many) because we didn't have time to review what he had captured as he needed to go once we had finished as he was going to a gig in the evening.

At the time of writing this post I still haven't gone through the "small" amount of images that I took, but here is a selection that have been processed so far.........

I am very please with what I captured, Ben must have dozens of quality images, it's the rule of averages! I expect it will take him a good while to go through them all but I am sure he will do so as quick as he can and then post them on his blog/website.

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