12/08/2015
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Photo of the Week: 5–11 August

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Barn Owl by Roy Rimmer

Barn Owl

My first thought on seeing this remarkable image of a Barn Owl by Roy Rimmer was "how?" — how do you compose the shot, how do you ensure the exposure is correct, and how do you focus on the subject?

After carefully studying this particular Barn Owl's routine, Roy set up dummy cameras and flash units to ensure it became accustomed to their presence. It was then a case of spending the long nights in the hide waiting for 'that' moment. The shutter was fired via a 30-metre home-made cable release, using a 16 mm lens and two flash units.

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This set-up was tested at home using a fluffy toy to replace the owl and just shows what can be achieved with persistent observation, lots of practice and just a little bit of luck on the night.

Congratulations to Roy on a distinctive and particularly imaginative Photo of the Week.

You can read more on bird photography from Steve Young, including product reviews and a regular Photo Challenge for readers, every month in Birdwatch magazine.

Other notable images

Knot
Knot, Kingsbarns, Fife (Photo: John Anderson)

Swift
Swift, Fairhaven Lake, Lancashire (Photo: Richard Blower)

Goldfinch
Goldfinch, Stony Stratford NR, Buckinghamshire (Photo: Rob Cox)

Meadow Pipit
Meadow Pipit, Roundstone, Galway (Photo: Heiko Peters)

Sabine's Gull
Sabine's Gull, Pennington Flash CP, Greater Manchester (Photo: Martin Standley)

Mute Swan
Mute Swan and Canada Goose, Andover, Hampshire (Photo: Jan Galko)

Ruff
Ruff, Musselburgh, Lothian (Photo: S Gillies)

Redshank
Redshank, Musselburgh, Lothian (Photo: S Gillies)

Gannet
Gannet, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, East Yorkshire (Photo: Jamie MacArthur)

Great Shearwater
Great Shearwater, Scilly pelagic, Isles of Scilly (Photo: David Aitken)

Gannet
Gannet, Liverpool, Lancashire (Photo: Dave Williams)

Bearded Tit
Bearded Tit, undisclosed site, Norfolk (Photo: Nick Appleton)

Written by: Steve Young