Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Wild Bird Wednesday 198 - Powerful Owl

I have said on a number of occasions that I dont seem to get as many pictures of birds of prey as some people - and this week I finally managed to get some pictures of a bird I have wanted to see for ages.

The Powerful Owl (Ninox strenua) is the largest owl in Australia - with males and females being between 50 and 60cm tall,  with a wingspan between 110 and 140cm.  Males can weigh almost 1.5kg.  By any measure this is an impressive owl.

I was lucky enough to see some report of this species on an web-forum, so I grabbed my cameras and headed off.  The birds were reported to be in the 'New Zealand Collection' of the Botanic Gardens in Melbourne, which is not a small area - so I was lucky again when some of the staff at the garden pointed me in the right direction.

I was be reasonable to say I was rather excited.  These owl feed on possums and many sightings include the rather gory spectacle of a less than well marsupial hanging from the claws of the owl.  Luckily for the possums and possibly unluckily for me, this was not the case when I saw them.

So, here in all their glory are two Powerful Owl.  I am still really pleased to have seem them!






This is a different bird to the pictures above
This is a different bird to the pictures above


Click on the blue button to link up to Wild Bird Wednesday.  (And I can't help but note that in two weeks, it will be the 200th time I have written something like that!) SM

42 comments:

eileeninmd said...

Hello Stewart, congrats on your owl sightings. They are beautiful birds. Great collection of photos. Thanks for hosting, Enjoy your week!

Brian King said...

What a gorgeous looking owl! Very handsome!

Author R. Mac Wheeler said...

We have a pair whose territory resides about three blocks each direction from us on the Hillsborough River. I love an excuse to be outside at sunset and listen to them hooting at each other from a block away. Love to know what they're saying to each other.

"Come here."
"No. You come here."
"Come here."
"No. You come here.
....

Silver Parrot said...

What a fantastic bird! Great series of shots - look at those incredible eyes!

I had to laugh when I realized your post was about owls and my entry this week features MY first two owl sightings!

Margaret Adamson said...

They seemed to eb keeping their eyes well on you. Gorgeous OWl and lovely shots of it Stewart. Many thanks for hosting. I had to put a thumbnail shot from yesterday on as today I only had a video. Hope you enjoy it.

Mama Zen said...

How beautiful! I love owls of any sort.

Frank Boxell said...

Stewart, that was definitely a cool encounter.

Linda aka Crafty Gardener said...

Fantastic owl sightings.

Rhodesia said...

I do love owls and these are great photos. Well done, have a good week, Diane

Findlay Wilde said...

Look how he's staring right at you. Fantastic.

Chris Rohrer said...

Sweet sweet sweet sighting. I love the name of this owl:)

Jo said...

Hi Stewart, I love owls and loved this post. I like the quaint name. Our Pel's fishing owl and Vereux's Eagle-owl is slightly larger and heavier than your Powerful Owl. Thanks for sharing and thanks for hosting this meme. I'll link up tomorrow (Wednesday in SA) Greetings Jo

Gayle atMuldoon said...

Definitely powerful looking! So glad you had the chance to capture it.

Beth said...

What a striking bird Stewart.

Kenneth Cole Schneider said...

Very impressive and surely aptly named bird. The second seems to have a more squared-off head.

Andrea Priebe said...

Powerful Owl would seem to be something of an understatement. He/she is magnificent and good for you for following up on this opportunity. Owls are one of my favorite birds for many reasons. Having had the opportunity to work with them on some basis, I find them to be much more calm and sensible than the other raptors. This is an Owl that I had never heard of so this is a real treat. Great pictures and lucky you ... I would trade places with you in an instant just to be that close.

Yes in two more weeks it is #200 ... pretty awesome I must say. I still look forward to your posts as much as I did when you first took over the blog ... I say lets shoot for 200 more :) So you know, if someone hasn't pointed it out, you transposed your number in your title ... 189 instead of 198. Just too excited over your owl, I'm guessing ...

Andrea @ From the Sol

Denise inVA said...

I would be so excited to see that beautiful owl. Congrats Stewart, great shots!

Gunilla Bäck said...

Great sighting of these gorgeous birds!

Екатерина Балагурова said...

You are lucky to get such great shots!!))

Anni said...

Congratulations on the sighting!!! How beautiful too.

TexWisGirl said...

wonderful and intense!

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Those birds are amazing Stewart. I thought at first that "powerful' was a descriptive adjective (only) and not the actual name of the species. They are certainly powerful looking! I posted owls that look like they could be tiny toys for yours!

Kerry said...

Powerful Owls!!! What a name. Appropriate. Recently we were in a wildlife refuge in the high desert of Oregon, USA, and we saw 3 species of owls. Great Horned, Short-Eared, and Burrowing.

pattisjarrett said...

The owls are impressive! How wonderful to find out they were near, and you got to see them. I'm kind of glad we didn't get the "lunch" photo. LOL Thanks for hosting!

Breathtaking said...

Hello Stewart!:) I'm delighted for you that you saw this great looking owl, so aptly named, and beautiful to look at. Such great shots!:)

Marcia said...

Beautiful and I think it enjoyed watching you as much as you did.

Anu said...

Congratulations!
Fantastic owl and great photos!

JP A Quiet Corner said...

What super photos, Stewart...so fortunate to get such clear shots!! When the owls are around here, I can never get a good shot!!!...:)JP

Lea said...


Magnificent owl photos!

Marie C said...

Oh he's gorgeous Stewart! So glad you found him!

John @ Sinbad and I on the Loose said...

That is one impressive owl. Possum is good eatin' too...so I have heard.

TheChieftess said...

They're a couple of magnificent birds!!!

Helma said...

These wonderful pictures of the owl.
I love owls and this is really great.
My compliments.

Greetings, Helma

Missy George said...

Wonderful pictures..I would love to know what he is thinking...Gorgeous..I have heatd an owl around here..Can't seem to find him...Great shots..

Dave Lewis said...

Congratulations! It's always great when you can find an owl...

photodoug said...

Stewart, powerful indeed. Thanks for sharing.

Екатерина Балагурова said...

Thank you for your Gallery and great photos of birds! I found many interesting information and admired the beautiful images of birds from around the world!

Terri @ Coloring Outside the Lines said...

Wow- lucky you! Eagles and owls...on my list! Thanks for sharing these pics and for hosting!

David Gascoigne said...

What a great sighting. When I visited Australia and inquired about this species, I was told that it was very unlikely indeed that I would see it. And that turned out to be the case. Congratulations to you, Stewart.

Chandra@GreenComotion said...

Both are very stunning models.
The photographer has done a splendid job also.
Have a Happy Day, Stewart!
Peace :)

Vineeta Yashswi said...

Very informative and pictures of bird are amazing...

Pat Tillett said...

I LOVE owls! These two are gorgeous. They don't always look like predators, but they sure are.