Ilkeston - An Owl Experience
w/e 10 August 2008
All this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490

Albion Centre

A couple of artificial owls have appeared on the roof of the Albion Centre presumably in an attempt to deter the pigeons that have become particularly numerous recently. The introduction of these statuesque frighteners has not been an unmitigated success as the pigeons have just taken up residence further down the precinct.

There was another owl image not far away where this vehicle with the decorated spare wheel cover was parked in the grounds of the Erewash Museum.

Schools are out for the summer and a number of events have been arranged at the museum over the holiday period. Despite grey skies and the threat of rain, a steady stream of spectators, both children and adults (if you'll excuse the pun) flocked to the museum last week to see one of those events that had set up on the lawn.
Owl Experience Display

That event as you may have deduced from the parked vehicle was Bob Morley's Owl Experience. Bob is an owl conservationist and public speaker giving talks among others, in schools to give a better understanding of owls and other birds of prey. Bob is also a wildlife photographer and prints of some of his excellent photographic images were available for sale at the museum as well as souvenir key rings.
The Owls

The Owls on the museum lawnBut the main attraction were the birds themselves which Bob introduced one by one. It is not unknown for him to be seen walking around Ilkeston with one of his birds perched on his arm although it should be understood that these are wild animals and could hardly be classed as pets. In his talks to the visitors to the museum Bob pointed out the different eye colours of the owls. As a general rule and contrary to popular belief, although there are exceptions, only the owls with black eyes are nocturnal hunters. Those with yellow eyes hunt during the day and orange eyed species usually hunt early in the morning and at twilight.

Bob had brought several species to the museum including a Great Horned Owl, a Barn Owl, a European Eagle Owl, an Indian Eagle Owl and a Tawny Owl but the smallest and cutest one that attracted the most attention was his White Faced Scops Owl named Gizmo. And just as a footnote, all the time I was at the museum, I didn't see a single pigeon. Perhaps the owners of the Albion Centre should get in touch with Bob!

There has been a link from this site to the Owl Experience for a long time now on the Recommended Links page but if you would like to visit Bob's site now click on the image below to open a new window.

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