What a gorgeous bird! Look at those eyes, and those speckles and bars, and those strong toes clinging onto the branch. I was surprised by how small this owl and its buddies were. Burrowing Owls are actually much smaller than they appear!
This was another owl from the same group. :) I tried to be discrete while taking these pictures, but I had to get really close to the bush to see over it. All three of the owls flushed. The only apology I could give was to back away quickly. Hopefully they didn't stay away from the spot too long. I'm pretty sure this was two parents and a juvenile, so their nest might have been around here.
Anyways! Finding these owls was a marvelous start, but there were lots more cool birds to be found!
Farther down the path, this American Kestrel flew over. You can see its head is bowed over - that's because it's chewing at its right foot, either to clean it or to eat something held in its claws.
I'm super happy with how well my camera captures flying birds. I was happily photographing this Great Egret when someone else flew right into the shot and distracted me -
A Black-crowned Night Heron! Night Herons aren't uncommon, but I'm rarely lucky enough to get pictures of them. This heron flew right past me obligingly. I love this shot because of the light rolling across its wing.
All in all, this morning was really enjoyable! I got some awesome pictures, and I also got to sketch some birds, and the creek was alive with activity. There were very few Barn Swallows in Colorado, so it was nice to get out again and hear the Barnies twittering above me.