The word is that the owls have been in the same area from late January, but only three days ago one local bird enthusiast had posted the info on a birdwatchers’ forum, and for three days the guys from Finnature have been there watching and photographing the owl and making it become used to people. So when I am driving towards Oulu from Kuusamo I am wondering if the bird is still there and how bold it exactly is.
Just as we finish setting up the tripods and huge lenses that are usually associated with bird photography we notice the owl flying about 200 metres away from us, and landing on top of a large birch tree near a house. We start getting closer, but the owl does us a favour and flies straight towards us as if to get a better look at two weird guys walking in an empty field in deep snow, carrying an armbreaking load of equipment.
The next three days are cloudy again, but with a slight snowfall on the first and third day and with some wind. The lack of light lets me use a slower shutterspeed to get the snow nicely flying in the pictures. On the evening of the third day the wind is picking up even more and during the night we get at least 15cm of fresh snow.
The same weather and quite heavy winds continue on the fourth day and the owl is gone. We are speculating of what has happened, has she (it was a female) moved on with her migration? Questions, questions. We were looking for “our” bird for more than three hours, but without any success. Only time will tell…
Please note that blogs reflect our photographers' opinions and not necessarily those of the directors of Wild Wonders of Europe.