Great Horned Owl Portrait

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I photographed this close up portrait of a Great Horned Owl during the raptor free flight program at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum near Tucson, Arizona,

You know how I love birds and I must say this Great Horned Owl was simply stunning.

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Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera and Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM lens

Some information from Wikipedia on the Great Horned Owl (Scientific Name bubo virginignus)

Owls have spectacular binocular vision allowing them to pinpoint prey and see in low light. The eyes of Great Horned Owls are nearly as large as those of humans and are immobile within their circular bone sockets. Instead of turning their eyes, they turn their heads. Therefore, their neck must be able to turn a full 270 degrees in order to see in other directions without moving its entire body.

An owl's hearing is as good – if not better – than its vision; they have better depth perception and better perception of sound elevation (up-down direction) than humans. This is due to owl ears not being placed in the same position on either side of their head: the right ear is typically set higher in the skull and at a slightly different angle. By tilting or turning its head until the sound is the same in each ear, an owl can pinpoint both the horizontal and vertical direction of a sound.

These birds hunt at night by waiting on a high perch and swooping down on prey. They also have 500 pounds per square inch of crushing power in their talons. An average adult human male has about 60 pounds per square inch in his hands. In northern regions, where larger prey that cannot be eaten quickly are most prevalent, they may let uneaten food freeze and then thaw it out later using their own body heat.

View 20 more comments

  1. Linda*B 56 months ago | reply

    This is an excellent portrait, beautiful!!

    Seen on your photo stream. ( ?² )

  2. Victor Alvarenga 56 months ago | reply

    que foto fantastica parabéns,adorei essa foto....

  3. Itinerant Wanderer 56 months ago | reply

    Terrific portrait of this majestic bird!

  4. AA <©> 56 months ago | reply

    Superb image


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  5. Toan N. 56 months ago | reply

    Fascinating photography !!!

  6. colorblindPICASO 56 months ago | reply

    Excellent shot! As usual, but I really like this one!

  7. Suzanne Pyle Photography 56 months ago | reply

    Wow..this is a great capture! How did I miss all these wonderful shots?

  8. netOrX 56 months ago | reply


  9. Maris* 56 months ago | reply

    What a wonderful close-up shot of the owl. A beautiful picture of an equally beautiful species.

  10. Dick Draegger Deaux [deleted] 55 months ago | reply

    Amazing Birds! Great Photo!!!!

  11. AzGlass 55 months ago | reply

    That is a great close-up. so sharp.

  12. cheryl.mcmaster [deleted] 53 months ago | reply


  13. aim in the forest 53 months ago | reply

    Fabulous shot. One of my favorite birds.

  14. Tee_Bird 52 months ago | reply

    That's an amazing shot. Makes me want to get a 100-400L for my 5DII... though I can tell you took that with skill, no gear.

  15. mirella cotella 43 months ago | reply

    Nature.. Light and Color
    the river-Cedrino
    Thank you for sharing
    with us your Image
    Group yokopakumayoko

  16. mharoldsewell 39 months ago | reply

    A hoot of a catch!

  17. jez.batt 21 months ago | reply

    I love owls, good focus and a lovely Horned kind

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