That's my hand, that is, bearing Avon, the captivating barn owl that had just been showing off its tricks as part of a rich flying display at the Hawk Conservancy Trust bird park near Andover yesterday. It was a real thrill to have a chance to hold such an endearing bird of prey, and later on I and others also had the opportunity to fly a magnificent Harris hawk named Josie.
We spent over six hours there in gorgeous sunshine, during which time there were three flying displays as well as two opportunities to see wild herons and red kites flying in to be fed in an adjacent field.
The trust were the first to breed native red kites to be returned to the wild in the UK, and some of the red kites that now return may be among them. One such red kite was soaring in the sky to keep an eye on things during one of the flying displays. Our time there really flew by and left us with renewed and enhanced respect for these remarkable animals.
I only had the use of a spare camera and kit lens, on top of which I was experiencing AA battery problems, but still managed to shoot almost 300 pictures.
Consecutve Blip #090
A Vulture Swoops Low Over Our Heads
Troy The Tawny Owl Wows The Visitors
Cheyenne, The American Bald Eagle
Orion, The Trainee American Bald Eagle
A Day At The Hawk Conservancy Trust, 22 March 2012 (Flickr set)
Lenses: Pentax 18-55mm kit lens
One year ago: Still Life With Cider