If you missed the Meadowlands Commission's free Raptor Prowl and Nature Walk this morning, you missed a great show — beginning with a Snowy Owl perched on a utility pole. We also had the unusual Eurasian Green-winged ( aka Common) Teal.
We will post more pix and a complete list of the 25.5 species tomorrow.
If you want to be notified of future free nature events offered by the Meadowlands Commission, e-mail us here.
Birder-photographer Kevin Watson took several top-notch Snowy Owl, Northern Harrier and Rough-legged Hawk shots in the Meadowlands during the past week.
You can see them here.
Several weeks ago, after a Snowy Owl was seen (and photographed) at Liberty State Park, New Jersey birders got into a lively debate about the wisdom (or lack thereof) of using flash photography when taking pictures of owls.
Now that Snowy Owls have been seen regularly in the Meadowlands, the debate takes on a little more immediacy.
We asked David Johnson, head of the Global Owl Project, for his thoughts.
Here's the word:
"From a biological perspective, I would not think that the camera flash would be much of an issue," says David. "There is lightning where many of the owls live, and such a flash is very short-lived. The focus should not be on the flash, per se, but rather on the general disturbance of people being close to the owl. " …
Click "Continue reading …" for more of David Johnson's comments on photographing owls.
Thought we would post some more shots of the two Snowy Owls in the Meadowlands.
Above, a Snowy flies near dusk on Friday. Below, you can see both owls in the same frame.
The white object in the upper-lefthand corner is the second owl.
Both photos been enlarged greatly; they were taken with a 400-millimeter lens.
The word is that heavy snows have severely reduced the number of lemmings on their home turf in the Arctic, and the Snowy Owls and moved south in search of prey on which to feed.
That's one of the many reasons that it is important to stay away from these highly stressed and sometimes starving owls.
Snowy Owls have also been seen elsewhere in New Jersey and in neighboring states in recent days.
More on Snowy Owls here.
MONDAY: ON PHOTOGRAPHING OWLS
This morning there were two Snowy Owls in the Meadowlands.
The photo above, taken this morning, is courtesy of Jerry Barrack. If you do see one of these amazing raptors, please keep your distance and do not trespass. These shots were taken through a telephoto lens.
SATURDAY & MONDAY: MORE SNOWY OWL PIX AND INFO
Click "Continue reading …" for more Snowy photos.