Winking Great Horned Owl in a Hay Barn

/, Birds, Davis County, Great Horned Owls, Utah/Winking Great Horned Owl in a Hay Barn

Winking Great Horned OwlWinking Great Horned Owl – Nikon D500, f9, 1/60, ISO 500, -0.7 EV, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light, not baited

I haven’t photographed Great Horned Owls since last year when I spotted one in the marsh at Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge. Two days ago I photographed one of the adult Great Horned Owls at the hay barn on Antelope Island State Park that appeared to be winking. I say “appeared” because I really don’t know why the owl had its right eye closed, it could have been resting that eye or it could have had something in it which made it close that eye.

I normally prefer natural settings and natural perches but these owls are often found in barns, granaries and other unnatural settings so I photograph them any way despite my personal preferences. I’m glad that these large owls have adapted to our human intrusion into the natural world and that they will nest in man made nest boxes.

Despite the unnatural setting I found that I liked the rusty background in this photo which is a support beam for the large metal hay barn which has rusted over time, this might not be my “best” Great Horned Owl photo but it is unique and I like it.

Life is good.



  1. Elephants Child May 26, 2017 at 2:19 pm

    Any day with a healthy owl is a good day.
    Thank you.

  2. Laura Culley May 26, 2017 at 1:46 pm

    Oh how this photo reminds me of my grandmother! She frequently took one-eyed naps (that sometimes turned into two-eye naps), keeping one eye on what was going on at all times. LOL!
    What a beautiful shot! Just wonderful!

  3. April Olson May 26, 2017 at 1:25 pm

    It is giving you stink eye for waking it up.

  4. Pepe Forte May 26, 2017 at 12:28 pm

    Great shot Mia. Love the detail and muted colors. Great horned owls are among my faves. Happy Memorial Day.

    [P.S. My daughters described the owls expression as, “Getting the stink eye from Mom”.]

  5. Patty Chadwick May 26, 2017 at 9:40 am

    I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this image!…the expression on the bird, the colors and detail, and the RUST!!! The rusty background and perch complement the bird so beautifully!!! AND…I love how much this bird reminds me of my GH owl, WOL!!!

  6. Kim May 26, 2017 at 7:19 am

    Oh my goodness, this is just amazing!

  7. Bob mcpherson May 26, 2017 at 7:18 am

    Cool photo, MiA,

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