I was given an excellent tip on the location of a Snowy Owl in the Ottawa area this week and set out this morning, with low expectations, to see if I could find it. As I drove along the highway I saw it sitting on a post facing the early morning sun. It flew off when I got out of the car on the shoulder of the road so I drove slowly to see if I could find it again.
Scanning this field with binoculars, I found a second owl. Can you see it?
Here it is sitting like a pile of snow in a corn field.
Next to the corn field, I found the first owl sitting on an old stump. Can you see it?
This picture was taken with 50x zoom. This younger owl is heavily marked.
I drove down a nearby side road and saw another owl sitting on a hydro pole. There was no place to pull over and I hoped that it would still be there when I got closer.
When I rolled down my window this almost completely white owl took off across the field with its five foot wing span. There was another owl on a hydro pole but I was unable to stop to get a good photo.
I counted four owls in total and wonder if others were missed on the snow covered fields. I drove down to a bird sanctuary on the St. Lawrence River afterward and found some more stealthy creatures. There weren't many migrating birds on this very cold morning but there were plenty of deer and red squirrels.