Hunting at Dusk

A pair of barn owls regularly nests in a huge old barn near Easton Royal. With permission from the farmer, I placed my hide nearby on several evenings. The first time I photographed an owl leaving the barn to hunt but I thought a more interesting image would be on its return to feed its chicks. The main barn entrance faces east so I placed my hide beside it with the sun behind me. Just before sunset, the first owl returned carrying its prey, its face fully lit by warm light. I had pre-set manual exposure of 1/1000th of a second at F/5.6 and relied on autofocus to lock on. I had just two seconds to fire 17 frames before the owl flew into the shadow cast by the barn.