I thought Mercury readers might like to see an unusual picture I took this winter.
My daughter Steph told me she had seen an old barn owl in a tree every night when she came by.
Knowing I am into this sort of thing these days now I am retired, I was more than happy to go along to try to catch a few pictures, with a bit of luck.
In Eric Hosking's beautiful book on owls he says it's a good idea when you hear the owl dropping on to a branch near its young to make a little rustling sound.
On hearing this, the owl usually stops and turns around to see what it is.
At this moment in time the owl should be facing the camera and this is perhaps the best time to press the shutter.
It makes sense - otherwise you can get a picture of the owl's back.
After setting my old tripod in position and focusing on the spot, I waited for about 20 minutes keeping very quiet.
Suddenly, I heard the distinctive sound of the owl landing.
I made a rustling noise hoping the owl would turn round for me.
I held my breath and pressed the shutter gently on my old Canon F1 film camera.
Several days later we got the film developed and quickly scanned the film, all excited.
Nothing there. What a pity. On further examination we did get something, though.
It looks to me quite like an old witch on a broomstick.
At the time I pressed the shutter I swear I thought I heard an odd cackle sound. Could have been the wind? Who knows. But it does make one think that perhaps all the witches haven't been burned at the stake.
Makes you think, doesn't it? J Dann, Enderby.
A service of YellowBrix, Inc.
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