I woke up to a beautiful morning with the sun shining and the most beautiful blue sky. I planned to spend the entire day out with my camera and new I would be out late, so I took my time getting ready and hanging with the dogs before going out. I first stopped in two locations along the Hudson River in hopes of seeing some bald eagles, but they did not cooperate. By mid afternoon, I headed out to the Shawangunk Grasslands in hopes of seeing short-eared owls.
I arrived at the grasslands at roughly 3pm and ran into a bunch of photography friends. I chatted for a few minutes, then around 3:15 the owls came up. Considering the time change, this was really early to see the owls up and flying. They were extremely vocal and put on the best show I've seen this year. Most of the activity was far, but it was incredibly fun to watch. Mostly the owls chased each other, but I did get an opportunity or two with a short-eared owl interacting with a northern harrier. It was so fun to watch.
There was one owl in particular who kept circling relatively close, near a post. Several times it looked as though the owl would perch on the post, but it never did. We all kept hoping over the course of 3-4 hrs as we watched.
The day was fantastic. It was nice to run into some photog friends, meet some to photography peeps and to watch the beautiful birds putting on an awesome show!