Meadow Mueller 07/2003 - 04/2015

Meadow Mueller 07/2003 - 04/2015

January 23, 2017

They're Back!

Finally! They're back! Snowy Owls are in our area once again.

It's a much slower year for this species of Owl. So few have been seen in Toronto this winter. And any that have been seen, aren't sticking around, or being reliably seen may be a better way of wording it.

After weeks and weeks of nothing, I was beginning to doubt my spotting skills. But then... just like that... I first spotted one on January 16th, then moments later, about a block away, I spotted a 2nd Owl. They were just there, beacons of white in the darkness.

I've had 8 encounters overall in a week with these 2 birds. Encounters meaning "sightings" of Snowy Owls and not counting individuals.

The night sights are great. It's just the Owl(s) and myself. I can sit in the truck and enjoy the view of them on a post, or them being active and hunting. I don't get out, I don't chase, no need to. And there's no other people around.

It's not favourable to photographers but someone who loves birds and nature, it's awesome. Traffic may be whizzing by but I'm in the moment with the bird(s).

Last winter I finished off the season with 59 encounters which began October 29th actually and ended in early April. I'm curious how often I will see them this time? Stay tuned.

First Owl. I saw it 3 nights in a row on that same lamp post in a parking lot.

Second Owl. Like I said, about a block away from the other. I've spotted it on the same post numerous times too.

It's fun trying to get a couple photos, and after I get home, I have to seriously manipulate them to bring out the Owl. Nothing worth printing but cool to share what is a rare sight this winter in our city.

I hope you've enjoyed seeing what I saw.

Have a great week!

January 19, 2017

Wild Moment

I'm still sitting on a blog, waiting for the grand finish which has not happened yet... a moment I hope comes soon so I can complete the tale. Until then, here's a moment with a Red-tailed Hawk I had from last week.

I had gone out one morning for a walk. It was pretty dismal other than a couple Tree Sparrows and one Junco. In the distance I did see a pair of Red-tailed Hawks courting in the sky. It was like a dance. Ah yes, despite the calendar saying "January", things are starting to happen already with some of the birds. Love is in the air!

A third Hawk was in the area, a lone bird, and while it may not be getting some tail anytime soon, it did get something else, tail too, sort of...

This Hawk was flying much closer to my standing point than the pair.

First it lands in a tree near the parking area.

Letting me see it from various angles.

Then it drops to the ground and sat there for well over 10 minutes.

Then it takes flight even closer to where I was standing at the side of the road. My camera is awfully slow for flight shots in most scenarios.

it lands in the small ditch and suddenly pulls this out of the leaves!

I would have loved this photo if the fire hydrant wasn't in it. I was so in the moment, didn't even notice it.

It then takes flight to a nearby tree to feast on it's catch.

The meal was done in no time at all!

It was pretty amazing to see although at one point I did feel sadness for the animal it caught. But that is nature. Seldom do I ever experience anything like this. Here I thought my outing was going to be nothing more than a pleasant but cold walk with very few birds. This Hawk sure made up for it.

A couple construction workers took a moment out to enjoy this episode of "In the Wild" with me. They thought it was pretty amazing. One guy commented that they see Hawks all the time out in the fields wherever they work, but this was a first to see one catch a meal right there like that. I bet they will be watching the Hawks a little more intently in the coming weeks, eh?

January 11, 2017

Hold On...

Hi everyone! I'm working on a blog at the moment. It's about my Pigeon friend Pierre and I having our biggest adventure EVER. It's near completion, but in the meantime, if you'd like to read something else from me... we do a monthly entry to Bird Canada and our latest blog came out yesterday. You may view it here at this link.

I just found this photo from October that I never shared as well. Anyone care to comment with a caption about this?

It makes me think of the more pleasant nights and I sure miss our nightly furry pals.

So ya, hold on, be back soon.

Cheers on Whisky Wednesday!