Short-eared Owls

For the past two weeks I've been reading on surfbirds.com about Missouri birders seeing a group of Short-eared Owls in an area just east of Smithville Lake.  Unfortunately I don't get off of work until after dark.....way too late to observe the owl show (what I've been calling it for the past few days).  Today was different though!  Late this afternoon my mom and I headed to the area where the birds have been spotted.  While waiting for the show we saw several entertaining sparrows (mostly American Tree).  We even got some wonderful views of 2 Northern Harriers hunting the surrounding fields.  Mom and I were just starting to doubt that we would see the Owls when I spotted a blunt torpedo shape flying far off above the field.  Within minutes there was a group of 6-8 Short-eared Owls flying between both sides of the road where we were parked.  They hunted in the area for nearly 15 minutes before they flew off into the darkness.  It was overwhelming!  The birds were a joy to watch.  Their wings!  Their swiveling heads!  Those EYES! 

Owls have got to be my favorite.  (Although I feel like I say that with every new bird I have the pleasure of observing)  I feel like I'm catching a glimpse of a secret life every time I see an owl.

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