At Audubon's Appleton-Whittell Research Ranch south of Elgin, a Long-eared Owl posed on the road Thursday night, giving me my best looks ever at this amazing bird. Usually I see these owls are on day roosts, where they look groggy or annoyed. Here in my headlights, the bird was a fierce and active hunter--turning its head rapidly 180 degrees back and forth, looking around. After a few minutes it flew off over the grasslands, leaving me with just a memory.
Day List: 38 species (190% of Bird RDA)
2008 List: 164