Northern Hawk Owl in New England (NH)

The Superbowl of birding weekend was packed with mind blowing moments. One of those moments for me, was when I was watching a Northern Hawk Owl launching swift and silent assaults on the local rodent population.

While I was sinking deeper and deeper into the seemingly bottomless snow, my mind wandered to a National Geographic show that I saw while I was still a youngster in South Africa. I’m sure most birders have those moments stuck in their head, when they've seen a bird in a magazine, book or TV show and thought WOW.

I clearly remember seeing the Hawk Owl special that was shot somewhere in Canada and being mesmerized by the odd shape, behavior and beauty of this incredible bird. What also struck me was that I would probably never see this owl ‘in real life’ as it was almost across the globe from sunny South Africa. I had to smile while watching the Hawk Owl scanning the snow field and knowing that I had a shot at seeing a wild Snowy Owl this weekend, another bird I saw at the Pretoria Zoo (South Africa) as a teenager.

All of those thoughts went through my head watching the Hawk Owl. I panned across to the Bloggerhead Kingbird team members and noticed that they were also clearly as mesmerized by the SUPER coolness of this hawk-possessed owl. Watching this winged wonder made time stand still and made me appreciate both the fluidity and immense beauty of life on planet earth.


Patrick Belardo said...

Definitely a winged wonder.

Lynne said...

He's gorgeous!

mon@rch said...

I just know a Hawk Owl will cross my path one day!

Bird Girl said...

Oh man, you are so lucky to see and photograph this owl! How exciting!!!

Christopher said...

Great shots - I didn't see the flight shot you got - that's really cool.

Owlman said...

Patrick, yeah I could have literally spent the whole day just watching this one bird - INCREDIBLE. Lol, I think I must have mentioned that a zillion times during the trip and now I'm making you read it in print too...

Lynne, you should see a bunch of these soon. You may even see a Boreal - GREEN.

Mon@rch, hang in there. The wait will make it even more special. This owl will literally blow your socks off.

Bird Girl, we were lucky especially to find such a relaxed exhibitionist ;-)

Christopher, thanks a lot. Amazing how they just bolt down like that.

Thanks for stopping in all. This Hawk Owl experience is one of my top 5 birding highlights and I'm glad you were able to share it with me.

Anonymous said...

That is such a great shot. WOW. I love it. Put it on a site where we can buy it.
-D, in Ramsey NJ