Walking down to my lower field this morning I discovered a set of tracks in the freshly fallen snow. At first I could not identify them. The snow was still falling and they were partially obscured, not really something to photograph and I assumed they were perhaps a weasel. After I put out the hay and grain for the sheep and pony I looked closer and realized that the tracks did not continue. They started at one spot and ended at another. That rules out a lot of animals. Also, came during the night. So looking closer I could see some of the wing marks. I enjoy solving the small puzzles on the farm, an owl had flown down almost caught a mouse or mole, done a little exploring then lifted of into the night.
In walking my lower fields in the winter I occasionally come across the signs of the night time hunting activities of these owls as they catch their prey under the snow. As I was returning up my hill off in the distance I spotted my night visitor.
A barred owl off in the distance watching me. It is nice to see these birds in the woods and the fields. I look forward to hearing their hoots as they start their courtship this spring.