Snow Angel


This week’s photo, taken February 15, 2014 in Okanogan County, WA, features a NORTHERN PYGMY-OWL surrounded by falling snow.

Several hours after we stumble upon the largest owl in North America (Great Gray Owl), we encounter a NORTHERN PYGMY-OWL, the smallest owl in Washington state. Never before have I aimed my camera upwards during a snow storm, but that’s what it takes to photograph this tiny predator that’s less than 7 inches long.

An hour later at a different location, we find another Northern Pygmy-Owl. It’s perched out in the open, and the snow is really coming down now. Apparently, those little critters embrace winter weather.

During our February 15-17 Washington Ornithological Society bird trip to north central Washington, I add 9 new birds (see below) to my state list. Life birds are labeled with an (L).

Gray Partridge (L)

Sharp-tailed Grouse (L)

Wild Turkey

Golden Eagle

Northern Pygmy-Owl

Great Gray Owl (L)

Gray Jay

Snow Bunting

American Tree Sparrow

To view photos of six of the birds from the list above, click on:

(click on any photo to enlarge the image)


About Joe Sweeney

I photograph birds to share the beauty and wonder I find in nature.
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4 Responses to Snow Angel

  1. Chrystina Bruneau says:

    Wow! That is a great photo — I would love to see one of those little owls! 🙂

    Sent from my iPad

  2. says:

    Joe: Any Snowy Owls out there? We have several close by & easy to view! Love your photos & posts! All the best, Nina

    Sent from my iPhone


  3. Sara Dale says:

    What a little cutie!

    Sent from my iPad

  4. susan hunter says:

    Hi Joe, Enjoying your blog very much! I wanted to share an interesting bird experience with you. I was recently in AZ and NM visiting friends and family. At the Tucson airport, we were escorted to the car by TWO ROADRUNNERS !!! They were obviously looking for hand outs, but when I think of all the effort and time we spent trying to locate them at the Ranch, I have to smile. So if you have friends in WA. who want to see Road Runners, send them to the Tucson airport. I also saw them at the Scottsdale/Phoenix Botanical Gardens and again in Albuquerque. They are certainly fun to watch! Best, Susan Hunter

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