Nature,  Wildlife

Photographing the Burrowing Owls of Cape Coral, Florida

Cape Coral, Florida is famous for its Burrowing Owls.  Cape Coral reportedly has over 2,500 burrowing owls located all over the city.

Cape Coral Burrowing Owl

Burrowing Owl

The city of Cape Coral has a Burrowing Owl Festival each year.  The Burrowing Owls also draw a good amount of photographer and birder tourists to the community.

One of the most popular areas to look for the Burrowing Owls is in the residential area near the Cape Coral Library.  However, I only found one active burrow located on the street next to the library.

To find the owls look for PVC posts sticking out of the ground and a wooden perch.  You'll have to look closely around the nest area.  The Burrowing Owl is only about 8 – 10 inches tall and sometimes they only stick their heads out of the burrow.

The best time to look for Burrowing Owls is in the morning and late afternoon which coincides with the best light for photography.

Burrowing Owl Sign

Don't get too close to the Burrowing Owl burrow and don't go inside the perimeter of the PVC pipes.  You could cause the Burrowing Owl to abandon its nest. 

You may be able to photograph the owls from the car window but for a better composition get down on their level.  A 400mm lens works well to be far enough away from the nest to not disturb the owls while still getting good photos of the birds.

You may also want to park at the library and check out the nesting areas in the vacant lots next to the library.  Also, keep a look out for song birds.  I photographed a Northern Mockingbird at the library and a Loggerhead Shrike while driving around the neighborhood.

Written by Martin Belan

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