I love owls, as many of you know.
In Florida, we have many different types of owls including the burrowing, barn, barred, eastern screech, and the great horned owls.
Out west, they also have many varieties of owls and on this trip we were able to get the usual images of the great horned owl adult. They are always quite observant to what’s going on in their surroundings, especially when they’re in the protective mode.Why the protective mode? Well because they had 3 baby owlets nearby in the nest. How absolutely adorable are they?As we photographed them, they were clearly on the alert themselves.Though we were out looking for owls, I couldn’t help but turn my head when I saw this little cutie fly by. The western tanager is a beautiful bird and this male was flying to and from the thick brush, making it difficult to get a clear shot. I found it interesting to know that the reddish head color actually comes from its diet … and it’s the most northern breeding tanager out there.Also brightly colored and flying around is the American goldfinch, which is the only member in its family to molt in the spring as well as the fall.Now, the main reason we were exploring this area was to find some long-eared owls. We never found the adults on this trip, but we found something even better … 3 young long-eared owlets. I honestly don’t think that they get much cuter.There were actually several families of LEOs around. Some a bit older than the others, as shown below.This young owlet was perched in the tree staring at us … actually found us first, which I imagine they all did. LOL. The sweetest face ever … reminds me of the Gremlins from the movie. Evidence of the area being the hunting grounds for these owls was evident by the kills sporadically strewn around the grounds.OK, so I got my owl fix this evening. Or at least until the next time I’m in the area. 🙂
Next Up: Heading into Yellowstone NP
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