He begins his watch over the forest just as the sun disappears, the winter mist hovering around him as the nocturnal hours set in. His prey scurry beneath him, unaware of his presence atop the tree branches. He waits patiently. Fear is not within him, nor is doubt. He does not waver in his own confidence. He will hunt tonight, and he will succeed.
Robert Bateman’s experiences with owls:
“As a boy, I would direct my hikes to places where owls might be seen. To see any owl seems to me to be an honor, but the great horned is the most formidable of them all.
I would prowl through the darkest coniferous groves, which shelter and conceal owls in the daytime. I would spend my time, not looking up in trees, but on the ground for regurgitated pellets – usually mouse bones wrapped in a capsule of fur. If I found any, it would be worthwhile to scrutinize the tree above for an owl-shaped shadow.
With luck, I would focus my binoculars on the dark blob and find the awesome eyes looking at me. However, my best chance came with the help of crows. They are great owl locators. As I approached, the owl (finding the harassing crows and human presence just too much), would fly with hysterical crows in hot pursuit. Those few seconds, watching the owl’s big, silent wings disappearing through the trees, would make my day.”
Winter Mist-Great Horned Owl is now available as a Limited Edition Giclee, handsigned by Robert Bateman. With each purchase, a copy of the 2012 Robert Bateman calender will also be included.