Friday 24 June 2011

Pagan Eye: Eagle Owl

I photographed this beautiful Eagle Owl during a display at Eagle Heights bird of prey centre, in Kent, which I visited a couple of weeks ago, before I hurt my back.

At Eagle Heights, I not only learnt a lot about birds, but also discovered they are difficult to photograph because they fly so fast. All my attempts at photographing falcons resulted in pictures of blue sky - perhaps with a tail feather just disappearing out of shot - or were so blurry they weren't usable.

Eagle Owls are a bit slower. They like to conserve energy and glide through the air whenever possible, or so we were told. I'm quite glad of that, as it helped me get one good picture from over 100 attempts. Thank goodness for digital cameras!

In mythology, owls are often seen as symbols of wisdom and secret knowledge, but are just as frequently feared as being bad omens.

However, Eagle Owls, which are big birds - smaller than the Golden Eagle but larger than the Snowy Owl - can be regarded as powerful symbols of protection. According to website The Owl Pages, in Central Asia, feathers from the Northern Eagle Owl are valued as amulets to protect children and livestock from evil spirits.

I managed to pick up a lovely Eagle Owl feather after the display. It is now on my mantelpiece along with a few other feathers I have picked up over the years. May it protect any youngsters or animals who enter my home.

On each Pagan Eye post, I show a photo that I find interesting, with a few words about it. I'm not quite sure what I'll be including - it could be a seasonal image, a pagan site, an event, or just a pretty picture.

If you want to send me a photo for a Pagan Eye post, please email it to Let me know what the photo shows and whether you want your name mentioned or not. For copyright reasons, the photo must be one you have taken yourself and you must confirm that you are submitting it for A Bad Witch's Blog.

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Unknown said...

That's an amazing shot; several baby owls have taken to hunting and lounging in my yard, and I can attest to the difficulty of capturing them on film.

I've never heard of owls as bad omens before, I'll have to look into that.

Badwitch said...

How wonderful to have baby owls in your yard!

Anonymous said...

Not quite related, but this looks like an interesting story with owls are the main characters: "Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole"