Weekend Digiscoping Spotlight 5 – Snowy Owls in Sussex County, DE

Tim SchreckengostBirding0 Comments

The Weekend Digiscoping Spotlight will highlight some of the fun shots we’ve gotten recently with a camera paired with a spotting scope. We welcome submissions of your favorite digiscoped shots to be featured in future spotlights, just use the contact form in the menu above.

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This week’s digiscoping spotlight is a compilation video of the Snowy Owls in Delaware. The video was taken with an iPhone 5 through a Celestron Regal 80F-ED using a Phone Skope adapter.

I’m sure most birders are aware of the Snowy Owl invasion that is currently taking place in the northeast. After twitching the Port Mahon owl, I went down to the Indian River Inlet the following day to track down another Snowy Owl report. I met Chuck Fullmer south of the Indian River Life-Saving Station where he re-found the previously reported owl shortly after sunrise. The bird was perched on a sign at the edge of the dune initially, but eventually flew back into the dune.

Snowy Owl at the Indian River Life-Saving Station in Sussex County, DE on 30 November 2013. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Snowy Owl at the Indian River Life-Saving Station in Sussex County, DE on 30 November 2013. Photo taken with iPhone 5 through a Celestron Regal 80F-ED using a Phone Skope adapter. (Tim Schreckengost)

We were watching and photographing this bird when two birders came over and informed us of another owl 200 meters south of where we were standing. What are the chances?

Snowy Owl at the Indian River Life-Saving Station in Sussex County, DE on 30 November 2013. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Snowy Owl at the Indian River Life-Saving Station in Sussex County, DE on 30 November 2013. (Tim Schreckengost)

Young birders enjoying their first Snowy Owls. Photo by Carrie Samis.

Young birders enjoying their first Snowy Owls. (Carrie Samis)

Both Snowy Owls were cooperative for many to see throughout the day and continue to be seen today. Birders from Maryland, New York, Virginia, and Delaware came to see these birds. Many young kids were presented with some jaw-dropping looks at their lifer Snowy Owl(s). There were many experience birders present who kindly lowered their scopes so the young birders could enjoy this rare, close-up occurrence. Thanks to all of the birders who shared their optics with the kids. I can guarantee that some of the kids who saw these owls today will turn into avid birders because of this experience!

All birders should be respectful of the birds, the property the birds are on, and of others trying to enjoy this unique invasion of the Snowy Owl. Check the DE Birds listserv and Facebook Page for updates on Snowy Owls throughout the state.