12/10/17 Snowy Owls at the Jersey Shore

Posted: January 17, 2018 in Uncategorized

It looks like we are in the midst of another significant Snowy Owl irruption. The first one occurred back during the 2013/2014 winter. This year an incredible number of Snowy Owls have been reported in the northern and eastern states. An irruption usually occurs after a very successful breeding year for the Snowy Owls in the Arctic. The following winter most adults will remain, but the increased number of juveniles are pushed south to find food elsewhere. The terrain along the dunes of the Jersey Shore are similar to the tundra and provide an abundance of food such as rabbits, mice, and shore birds.

These images were taken over the last two months using a 500mm lens. All photos were cropped and taken at a safe distance from the owls. Snowy Owls are definitely my favorite birds to photograph even though most times it’s extremely cold and windy. They are incredible animals. Hopefully they will remain for a few more months before their epic journey back to the Arctic.

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  1. Harry Collins says:

    Awesome shots Ray! Love all of these

  2. Ken Curtis says:

    Terrific images, Ray. I can see that you spent a lot of time getting sand in your shoes to capture these outstanding images.

  3. Joe Gliozzo says:

    All are beautiful photographs Ray. As you know, when you are passionate about what you are doing it shows in your work. I know how snowy passionate you are!

  4. Thomas says:

    Beautiful images Ray !!

  5. All SO beautiful. We have really been blessed this year. What a wonderful experience. You are a very talented photographer who loves nature, and it shows. Thank you for everything! Angela

  6. How intriguing, Ray, that you give this spectacular array to us, on the day that I did my blog about your being the only person for whom the owls move. This level of synchronicity is heartening. All the scenes seem one-of-a-kind. But the one with the lighthouse should be marketed to who(m)ever, re articles on and symbols representing our misguided, too-often-mocked state. Snowy Owl with Old Barney – could be on the license plates even. I hope you promulgate these far and wide. And I can barely wait til Sunday’s snowy-quests with friends! Miraculous, Ray. Thank you. c

  7. member of Maryland Birding and Delaware Birding says:

    These are gorgeous. Which beach at the Jersey Shore did you take these. I use to go to Wildwood in my younger days. Want to come up to go to that Forsythe Refuge. Are there any ducks there now or is it frozen. Any owls there? I live in Baltimore. Everywhere worth going to is at least a 2 or 3 hr. drive. Keep on with the good work. What kind of camera do you use and lens
    Shirl Harbin.

    • rtyblog says:

      Thanks, Shiri. Snowy Owls are along the Jersey Shore from Sandy Hook down to Cape May at various beaches. These were taken at Island Beach State Park and the south end of Long Beach Island. Most bays are thawing out and ducks returning. I shoot with a Nikon D800 and D500 and a 500mm F4 lens and a Nikon 200-500mm F5.6.

  8. These are all fantastic Ray! I’m so glad you posted them here so I can share your blog with a friend here who is an avid bird photographer.

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