Centennial Valley Prairie Falcon and a Short-eared Owl Barbed Wire Casualty

/, Birds, Centennial Valley, Clark County, Idaho, Montana, Prairie Falcons, Short-eared Owls/Centennial Valley Prairie Falcon and a Short-eared Owl Barbed Wire Casualty

Prairie Falcon with a white cloud in the backgroundPrairie Falcon with a white cloud in the background – Nikon D500, f7.1, 1/800, ISO 320, +1.0 EV, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light, not baited

I spent some time in the Centennial Valley of Montana yesterday and the best bird of the morning was this adult Prairie Falcon photographed on a cattle chute with a white cloud in the background. By the way, if you look under the falcon’s tail you can see the falcon got photo bombed by two tiny midges. I was surprised that the falcon hung around for as long as it did and although some people might not like the white cloud in the background I think it highlights the falcon’s colors beautifully.

Defecating Prairie FalconDefecating Prairie Falcon – Nikon D500, f7.1, 1/800, ISO 320, +1.0 EV, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light, not baited

And anyone who doesn’t like it… well the bird shows what it thinks of that.

I also like the texture of its feathers and of the corner post of the cattle chute it perched on.

Deceased juvenile Short-eared Owl on barbed wireDeceased juvenile Short-eared Owl on barbed wire – Nikon D810, f8, 1/1600, ISO 500, Nikkor 18-200mm at 200mm, natural light, not baited

But I do have some bad news to report from Clark County, Idaho where barbed wire claimed another casualty, a deceased juvenile Short-eared Owl that must have gotten caught in the fence a few days ago. Seeing this young owl hung on the fence breaks my heart. I makes me sick. I’m sorry this owl couldn’t be saved. So damned sorry.

Seeing and photographing the Prairie Falcon took a bit of the sting out.

Mia

4 Comments

  1. Elephant's Child September 18, 2016 at 2:07 pm

    I am so sorry to see the wire has claimed yet another victim.

  2. Diane McPherson-Stern September 18, 2016 at 10:55 am

    I sure enjoy your posts Mia. I envy you. Would loved to have been able to do what you do. Love birds and raptors. Take care and God bless.

  3. Neil September 18, 2016 at 7:42 am

    Sorry about having to find that Short-eared Mia 🙁 Always sad to see that…

    Any chance you grabbed GPS coordinates for that mortality location? We’re looking for more information like that across the board for Short-eared Owls. If not no worries, but perhaps you can think about it in the future? Thanks so much, and hope your trip perks up!

  4. Bob McPherson September 18, 2016 at 7:13 am

    Beautiful photos, Mia. Sad for the one claimed by the barbed wire.

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