Thursday, 23 August 2012

Owls

This post is a bit of a cheat, showing captive birds at a little butterfly and wildlife park that Lisa and I visited a couple of weeks back. I am quite pleased with the results though.




The Eagle Owl is a massive bird, a fully grown adult female is capable of taking a roe deer, although this one was quite happy tucking into a chick! They have recently started being seen in the wild in Britain, escapees from collections, with individuals being seen in Yorkshire, although I am not sure whether they are breeding or not. There are feelings that this bird can harm the native wildlife, out-competing other birds of prey and thus removing these from our landscape, I am not sure what to think of this, do we remove them, or do we live and let live?



The Burrowing Owl is from the U.S. and is similar to 'our' Little Owl, which is itself an introduced species. There is a whole can of worms to be opened when we start to look at 'true' native birds and ones that are not really, but have been in the country for so long that they have become thought of as native.

16 comments:

  1. Hi John, No you are not cheating if you freely admit where it was taken. Any good shot of any creature is worth posting.

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    1. Thanks Mike,
      Hopefully these photos were good enough to post! ;)
      J

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  2. Wow, John, that's a question for the philosophers! On one hand do we interfere with nature 'red in tooth and claw' or do we create an environment of protectionism for our native species.
    You might compare it to "all them bloody foreigners coming over here and taking our jobs/marrying our women/killing our rodents"!
    Click here for Bazza’s Blog ‘To Discover Ice’

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    1. Hi Bazza,
      I think as humans we don't mind nature being natural as long as it doesn't interfere with us too much, or offend our view. We like to see different animals and birds, but if that creature gets in the way of how we live our lives we tend to call them pests and there is a call for eradication or reduction. What is the answer? I, for one have no idea, all I know is that I come from the 'live and let live' camp.
      J

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  3. Wow, these are incredible photos! Owls are my most favorite birds (I wish I saw more of them)! Burrowing Owls are such inquisitive little birds!

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    1. Thanks Tammy, very kind of you. Owls are such fantastic birds, I, like you don't see enough of them!
      J

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  4. These are great shots John. Captive or not, they are still good pictures; and you said 'captive', so there was no trying to fool anyone.

    As for the introduction of some species, and what to do, my view is we should let nature take its course. We've meddled far too much as a species, and created all the planets problems.

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    1. Thanks Keith,
      I have to agree with your view. We, as humans tend to think we have a right to choose life or death over everything on this planet. As you say, we have caused so many problems by introducing 'foreign' species for our own amusement, or to deal with something that we have caused and then moan when that foreign species starts to over-run us.
      J

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  5. Your photos of these magnificent birds are really superb John!

    It is a very tricky subject and one which seems to divide the 'experts'. Like you, I am not sure what to think but it would be devastating if the Eagle Owl's potential success meant we eventually lost, for instance, Hen Harriers. Equally, I suspect a lot of the noise is coming from the shooting brigade who have their own interests at heart regarding deer, pheasants etc. and of course it is those very same people who are responsible for the fragile state of the Hen Harrier anyway!

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    1. Thank you Jan,
      Would the Eagle Owl cause the demise of the Hen Harrier? I feel that would only be the case because of the fragile state of the harriers population which, as you say has been caused by humans in the first place.
      J

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  6. Captive or not a lovely set, especially the Burrowing Owl.

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    1. Thanks John, very kind of you.
      J

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  7. I have no problems with 'cheating' as long as you state where you took it. Nice shots. Introduced species can always be controlled if they become a nuisance.

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    1. Thanks Mike,
      But what do they become a nuisance too?
      J

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  8. It's wonderful to see them up close John.
    I have a similar wildlife centre close by who do a lot of work with injured and orphaned badgers.
    They also have owls (mainly rescued)and they do bring in much needed revenue from visitors.

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    1. Hi Andrew,
      It is, they are magnificent birds. Centres like these are great! They are a good educational tool (in my opinion), unfortunately, the one we visited is set to close at the end of September due to lack of visitors!
      J

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