Nice to see Si Bound back up in the grim north for the weekend. Spent Saturday evening searching for the strangely elusive Short eared Owls. You would think they would hunt regularly given the big freeze but after an hour non had been found. Fortunately the Barn Owls were out again from mid afternoon tending to concentrate on the fields just north of Prestwick Road, a pair of Stonechat fed near the flagpost gate and Water Rails were in evidence in the nearby rushes. BG and his good lady arrived just as we decided to return home and that prompted a Short eared Owl to fly low across the road but we couldn't find it again in the gathering gloom. As we peered a large raptor glided in to our left and expeecting a Buzzard the bins were focused to see a bird with a much longer tail and no flapping to the the flight!
In the hope this was a Harrier coming in to roost I was up at first light Sunday with Tawny Owls calling at Carr Grange and a single Barn Owl still hunting at the east end. Spent a good two hours searching but no joy and an average 38 species recorded. Met Si again on the way back who had just managed to photograph a perched Short eared Owl mid morning so his efforts had eventually paid off.
My own photgraphs were limited by the falling snow but with birds close to the house some opportunity for some close ups have presented themselves.