Hootie, the barred owl

Martin Wildlife Photography's photo of Hootie, the barred owl, perched on a trimmed cedar branch
Hootie, perched on a trimmed cedar branch, as the morning sun casts soft amber illumination onto the left portion of his body.
Hootie mid-flight, crossing from one side of the road to the other.

If I were asked what species of animal has been my favorite to photograph, it would without a doubt be the barred owl.

Most people only ever hear their call but rarely ever do they get to see them. I have made it a goal in my photography to bring my audience a look at the barred owl that is unique and different.

Almost daily, I can locate and photograph barred owls. This particular owl I have named “Hootie.” He is the owl I see the most regular. He hunts the same roadway almost exclusively, and he has allowed me to get within 15 feet of him when taking his pictures!

There is a mutual respect between the two of us. I really believe that my presence does not bother him in anyway. If it did, I don’t believe I would see him with the frequency that I do. It is exciting to say the least, to have such a bond with a wild animal.

A view from the back side of Hootie, on his way to a different perch.

I get asked a lot how I know that Hootie is a male. Female owls are generally 30% larger, and based off of my experiences with all of the owls I’ve photographed, he is on the small side, therefore, leading me to believe the this owl is a male. Other than size, there is no clear distinction between the two sexes. https://www.facebook.com/MartinWildlifePhotography

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