Long-eared owls

I have read about the Long-eared owls that roost in the centre of towns in Hungary for some time and wanted to go to see them. In February I did and it is an amazing sight. Here is an owl that most of us in the U.K. have little contact with. Occasionally roosting birds can be found, but usually they are well hidden and difficult to photograph. In Hungary they are very visible and numerous. The two towns we looked for them were Kisújszállás and Turkeve. Amazingly they are right in the centre of Turkeve roosting in fir trees. Some are more visible than others and you have to spend time finding more exposed birds. It was also a pity it was not snowy or frosty.

I was also surprised to see so many in flight during the day. I assume these were disturbed birds changing roosting locations, but given better weather flight shots may have been possible.

Our guide was Zoltan from whose hides for eagles we also used.

Long-eared owl, Asio otus, single bird in tree, Hungary, February 2016. Canon EOS 1DX. 800mm lens. 3200 iso. 1/125th at f10. On foot with a tripod.

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