Saturday, February 8, 2014

I'm back - Great Gray Owls

After having both lungs full of blood clots, spending a week in the hospital and eight weeks in bed at home, I have finally been cleared to enjoy hiking, photos and birding.  I will go back to teaching school on March 3.  That gives me three more weeks to heal and get in shape to punish those kids.

Yesterday I found two Great Gray owls and today I found a total of four.  The recent cold weather (minus 17) and then two days of snow appears to have brought them down to the river bottoms.  Here are a few shots of these beautiful birds.

Here one shakes the whole body as if it was a dancer.

Flying over a meadow, this Great Gray locates a rodent.

After it swallows the rodent whole, it flies right past me and lands in a tree just 20 feet from me.

Blessed with two sets of eye lids, this one blinks the clear eye lids that appears to be blue contacts.

This Great Gray is taking a bath cleaning one feather at a time.  If a feather came out while being cleaned, the feather was eaten.

A royal predator. After watching them from seven hours in two days and shooting over 2000 photos, I learned a lot about the Great Grays and plan on spending more hours with them.

Just a couple more wild days in Idaho and looking for a lot more.


Yogi♪♪♪ said...

You are a very patient man spending so much time in the cold. Your pics are incredible though.

Glad you are back and continue healing.

Wilma said...

What a thrill it must have been to see them so well - with great photos to share.

Hope you stay warm and recover fully. I have managed to avoid all but 2 weeks of the cold in the upper midwest.

Monts said...

Hi Bill
Sorry to hear you have not been well
But glad your on the mend again.Great shots of the Grey owls they are really superb, I'll swap your cold for some of our rainstorms of the last two months.
Take care and look forward to many more wild days in Idaho.

eileeninmd said...

What a beautiful owl! I am glad you have recovered from your illness. This owl must have been waiting for you to show up! The blue eye is cool! Great shots, Bill!

Mary Howell Cromer said...

Oh Bill so glad to have you back and to know what has been going on with you. Now then...OH MY GOODNESS Great Gray Owls, you already know how envious I am ;) I think I shall catch the next flight out and have you take me to them...ha ha and my luck they will have all left your area. One day, one day, top now of my wish list!!! Your images are wonderful, just wonderful!!! Great news about the Red-Shouldered Hawk out your way. Did you get to photograph it? Blessings your way~