Eastern Screech-Owl in Southeastern Wisconsin on April 29, 2018

While out birding I came across a Eastern Screech-Owl sitting in a natural cavity. The owl sat there not doing much but was keeping track of a couple of Grey Squirrels that caught its attention. I will say it is the year of the Eastern Screech-Owl, this is the 5th different one I have seen. It was another cool day with temps in the upper 50’s midday, with plenty of sun but with an east wind made for a chilly day for this time of year. Images were taken on April 29, 2018.

Eastern Screech-Owl resting peacefully in a natural cavity…

Eyes on a Grey Squirrel a tree away…

Looking out yonder…

Looking below at another Grey Squirrel…

Great Horned Owl with Owlets in Southeastern Wisconsin on April 27, 2018

While out birding this morning along the lakefront in Milwaukee I received a call from Bruce that he had and was photographing a Great Horned Owl with 3 owlets. Birding was a little slow along the lakefront where I was with nothing really going on so I made the drive to check these cuties out. When I arrived there were 3 owlets in a row on one limb. The adult female stopped in a couple times to check on the little ones but did not hang around. I’m not sure how old these owlets are but I’m sure they will be flying some soon and spreading out in the tree some too. It was a nice opportunity to see the first owlets of the spring. It was a bright sunny day with little wind but chilly at first. A thank you to Bruce for the call this morning. Images were taken on April 27, 2018.

The 3 Great Horned Owl owlets…

The one on the right is looking at the adult female off in a tree…

Great Horned Owl, adult female off a ways in a tree…

Great Horned Owl, adult female…

Just a pair cuddled up…

Eastern Screech Owl in Milwaukee County Wisconsin on March 10, 2018

Nice to see this Eastern Screech Owl in Milwaukee County. The owl came up from in the hole and gave nice views but never opened their eyes while I was there. Just looking cozy up in a natural cavity. It was a beautiful morning out with plenty of sunshine and mild temps. Images were taken on March 10, 2018.

Barred Owl in Milwaukee County Wisconsin on February 18, 2018

While birding today in Milwaukee County I discovered a Barred Owl resting on a limb. Nice to see them just relaxing in their space and blending in with the surroundings. I took a few shots and left the area. A beautiful February day with full sun and mild temps in the 30’s with low winds. Images were taken on February 18, 2018.

Eastern Screech Owl in Milwaukee County Wisconsin on February 14, 2018

Doing some birding today in Milwaukee County I came across a Eastern Screech Owl, gray phase. It was resting in a natural captivity. After a couple minutes I looked again, and it was gone, probably went back in the hole. Almost felt like spring with plenty of sunshine and the warm temps around 40, next to no wind, very pleasant. Images were taken on February 14, 2018.

Northern Saw-whet Owl in Milwaukee County Wisconsin on January 19, 2018

The last few weeks I looked extensively for the elusive Northern Saw-whet Owl. Recently while out birding, I was checking out some more trees. I was excited to find a fresh pellet on the ground, then a short distance away, a cute Northern Saw-whet Owl was staring at me. I have never seen a Northern Saw-whet Owl before, captive or wild so this was a real treat and a life bird too. Not moving much, I put my camera up, took a few shots of this beautiful owl. I would tell anyone who asks, how do you find a Northern Saw-whet Owl? Look in the pine trees around you. You just might be surprised to find one like I was and be rewarded too with a photo. A mostly cloudy day, temps in the mid 40’s, with steady winds.

Northern Saw-whet Owl

Northern Saw-whet Owl

Binomial name: Aegolius acadicus

Category: Typical Owls

Size: 8” long, 17” wing span

Weight: 2.8 oz

Cool facts: Smallest owl in North America with a cat like face that is highly nocturnal and seldom seen.

Northern Saw-whet Owl

Northern Saw-whet Owl

Northern Saw-whet Owl

Northern Saw-whet Owl

Northern Saw-whet Owl

Northern Saw-whet Owl

Northern Saw-whet Owl

Northern Saw-whet Owl

Northern Saw-whet Owl

The found pellet…

Long-eared Owls in Milwaukee County Wisconsin on January 8, 2018

I came upon some Long-eared Owls today while birding in Milwaukee County. They gave nice views from a distance. It was an extremely cold day with temps in the lower teens for highs, some good winds, made it feel like arctic circle. Images were taken on January 8, 2018.

Long-eared Owl

Binomial name: Asio otus

Category: Typical Owls

Size: 15” long, 36” wing span

Weight: 9 oz

Snowy Owl going for it’s Prey on the Milwaukee Lakefront on December 26, 2017

I watched this perched Snowy Owl for a couple of short minutes this morning on the Milwaukee lakefront. Then it’s head went up and looked to the north as if it had heard something. A moment later it took to the air and headed north out of sight. It was a cold morning with temps around -5 F and very little wind, the sun made it feel not too bad. Here are a couple flight shots as it left the area. Images were taken on December 26, 2017.

The Snowy Owl just after lift off…

Just smooth sailing for this Snowy Owl…

On its way to its prey…

Snowy Owl at Bradford Beach in Milwaukee Wisconsin on December 15, 2017

A nice surprise! As I sat in my car looking for any sign of a gull at Bradford Beach this morning off in a distance I spotted this big white bird flying to the south. It was over the water and then heading right towards me. Still off in a distance, I thought, gezz, this gull, looks almost like a Snowy Owl. As I watched, it landed on the beach, to my surprise, it was a Snowy Owl. As I was getting out of my car, I was not surprised to see a dog walker with their dog walking towards me. I quickly got a few images as I knew time time was running out with this dog coming. I watched the owl look to the road, then back towards the dog, that was it, the owl headed out over the water. I never saw a Snowy Owl on a beach before, not that I could remember. It was a dull morning with cloudy skies, temps around 16, and a good wind out of the west. Images were taken on December 15, 2017.

Snowy Owl right after landing…

The head pops up…

The Snowy Owl looks to the road…

The Snowy Owl looks to the dog getting closer…

And off it goes out over the water…

Snowy Owl in the snow at the Lake Express in Milwaukee Wisconsin on December 9, 2017

With the first snow fall of the season that I was present in Milwaukee, I checked the Lake Express for a Snowy Owl. A Snowy Owl was present just enjoying the falling snow. It looked right at home in this surrounding. It was very cold, with temps in the high teens, and a stiff wind out of the north with cloudy skies, it felt like below zero. Images were taken on December 9, 2017.

Snowy Owl Snoozing with the Moon in Milwaukee County Wisconsin on December 8, 2017

While doing some birding in Milwaukee County this morning I came across a Snowy Owl. It was perched on top of a large dirt pile. For the most part the Snowy Owl was resting and left undisturbed, a couple of times the eyes almost opened.  The moon made a nice back drop for the Snowy Owl image. I took a couple of images and left the area. It was a very cold morning, full sun with temps in the teens, stiff winds made it bitter cold out there. Images were taken on December 8, 2017.

Snowy Owl snoozing with the moon…

Snowy Owl at Lakeshore State Park in Milwaukee Wisconsin on November 28, 2017

Starting out birding at Lakeshore State Park in the morning provided great views of a not only the beautiful Purple Sandpiper I recently reported, but also a stunning Snowy Owl. Walking the paths at the park the Snowy Owl was found sitting in a large rock area between some rocks. Staying a good distance away motionless I sat for about 20 minutes and then the bird perched up on a higher rock for another 20 minutes. Under no pressure, I was waiting patiently for a flight shot, the owl eventually took flight and flew over and landed middle of the walk bridge to the island and landed on the railing. A woman walking walked up the bridge not even seeing owl along with a gull all came together at once and I heard a scream! The owl flew to the fishing pier to where I was near. The Snowy Owl sat on the hand railing there for about 15 minutes before a family walked out on the fishing pier for a family photo shoot with the skyline not seeing the owl. The owl flushed across the lagoon to some rocks near the water. It took 3 drinks in front of a handful of Mallards. There was not interaction between the Snowy Owl and ducks. After about 15 minutes at that location the Snowy Owl flew to the north out of sight. Maybe out to a breakwall. The Snowy Owl put on an amazing show. I stopped at Lakeshore State Park this morning for some general birding, no sign of the Snowy Owl, it is hanging out some where else I guess. That Lakeshore State Park sure presents some great birds on an annual basis, wow! Images were taken on November 28, 2017.

Images are in order of the way the events happened…

Hanging out between some big rocks at the park…

Always looking around in all directions for predators…

Perches up on a large rock, then minutes later the Snowy Owl flies to the walk bridge to the island at the park…

Always looking around in all directions for predators…tail up, looks like he is about to fly….

Here the Snowy Owl flies to the walk bridge to the island and lands on the railing, then the walker comes along… and it flushes to the fishing pier

Flying to the fishing pier…

Perched on the fishing pier railing…

Moments before the family walks up the ramp to the fishing pier…

The Snowy Owl flies across to this location and immediately takes a drink, a total of 3 here as the Mallards go about their business…

It appeared there was absolutely interaction between the ducks and the Snowy Owl…

Drinking…

Right after a drink…

After the drink and some passing time, the Snowy Owl takes to the sky and heads north out of sight…

Snowy Owl at the Lake Express Ferry in Milwaukee Wisconsin on November 14, 2017

The Snowy Owl along the lakefront in Milwaukee gave nice views this morning. Not much action other than some preening and a yawn. Still nice to see this beautiful owl. Images were taken on November 14, 2017.

A little preening here…

The yawn…

 

Laying low as a Northern Harrier was in the area

 

In the planter

Snowy Owl at the Lake Express Ferry in Milwaukee Wisconsin on November, 6 2017

The highlight on the Milwaukee lakefront this morning was a Snowy Owl at the Lake Express Ferry. It only hung around resting on top of a container for a couple of minutes before took off and landed on the breakwall. A majestic bird that always makes you stare at it. It was a cold day with temps around 35 degrees and some sun and a breeze. Images were taken on November 6, 2017

Snowy Owl

Binomial name: Bubo scandiacus

Category: Typical Owls

Description: Adult males are mostly white with a few dark feather tips.  Adult females and juveniles are white with dark scalloping on chest, back, wings, and tail.  Yellow eyes, black beak, and feathery feet.

Size: 20”- 28” long, 49” – 59” wingspan

Weight: 3.5 lb. – 6.6 lb.

Habitat: Wide open, treeless spaces such as shorelines, lakes, open fields, and agricultural sites.

Snowy Owl on the Milwaukee Lakefront on October 31, 2017

A Snowy Owl was found on the Milwaukee lakefront this morning. It had caught an American Coot for something to eat and was sitting on that during the picture taking. The bird never moved from the spot while I was present. First one of the fall season reported in the area that I know of. It was a cold morning with stiff winds and little sun to warm up with. Images were taken on October 31, 2017.

Snowy Owl with the American Coot

Snowy Owl

Binomial name: Bubo scandiacus

Category: Typical Owls

Description: Adult males are mostly white with a few dark feather tips.  Adult females and juveniles are white with dark scalloping on chest, back, wings, and tail.  Yellow eyes, black beak, and feathery feet.

Size: 20”- 28” long, 49” – 59” wingspan

Weight: 3.5 lb. – 6.6 lb.

Habitat: Wide open, treeless spaces such as shorelines, lakes, open fields, and agricultural sites.

Just looking around, this bird seemed content just sitting there. Probably resting from a long flight…

The back view…