Tony McLean's East Yorkshire Wildlife Diary

Wildlife photography in East Yorkshire

Silence is golden

Barn Owl-evening light

Recently, I’ve spent some wonderful evenings at the Wolery*. Owl photography seems to have become my latest obsession and I’m now witnessing more sunsets than I’ve ever done in my life.

Owls are such wonderful creatures. It’s a magical experience to watch them hunt over the meadows as the golden light of evening turns their plumage to gold.

Barn Owl-evening hover

Photographing owls does require a great deal of patience but the rewards are immeasurable. On many occasions I have returned home without making even one exposure. Sometimes the owl(s) are just too far away to obtain a decent photograph, even a cropped one. I was exploring the area last Sunday afternoon and was becoming increasingly frustrated as the hours ticked-by without a glimpse of an owl. I took a short walk away from my camera & tripod in order to scan the adjacent fields for activity. I had walked less than 100 metres when I saw a Barn Owl flying directly towards me. I stood perfectly still and watched in awe as it floated silently past; its wing-tip less than a metre from my head. I rushed back to my camera position but it was too late! It took a wrong turn and flew off northwards.

What an experience! So shiveringly silent and yet if you’re a vole, so deadly too.

Barn Owl-at sunset_2

Short-eared Owl_4

* Wolery – from Winnie-the-Pooh by A.A Milne. (I’m not going to give away all of my secrets!)


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3 thoughts on “Silence is golden

  1. Hi Tony

    Great work! Just returned from a trip from Norfolk. Endorse your every word re these fantastic creatures. I agree they can easily become an obsession. Would love to meet up with you if you are agreeable.

    Kind regards Roy

  2. Hi Roy

    Good to know that I’m not the only obsessive photographer. I’m a long way from Pembrokeshire but maybe we could meet up some day?


    Tony McLean

  3. Hi Tony

    I Love Owls too!

    I want to visit Tophill in the near future so maybe then?

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