Fulvous Owl

Fulvous Owl, Opatoro Highlands, Honduras

The Opatoro Highlands, exceptional coffee country, is the highest forest accessible by road in Honduras. Of course, calling them roads is a stretch…especially after a season of heavy coffee truck traffic. They do carry you high. The day we visited, I had a bout of Traveler’s Disease, so I was not at my best. We hiked down off the road a quarter mile to see this Fulvous Owl (or Guatemalan Barred Owl) admittedly a life bird for me, and I was really not sure I was going to make it back up. I had to pass my photo vest and my gear to the willing (young and strong) Older Rodrigues to carry the last 100 years up the very steep hill, while I climbed 15 steps, and rested for 3 minutes, the rest of the way up. Still, the owl was worth it. It’s range is limited to the mountains of Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador, and though it is common there, and often responds to recorded calls, you have to climb high to see it. Alex Alvarado, our guide for the trip, got some excellent video through my scope of the owl calling, and I certainly enjoyed my encounter. And I survived the hill, and the day, and the Traveler’s Disease, so all is well. Later in the day, while looking for a Resplendent Quetzal nest right next to the road, another Fulvous Owl flew in and perched right over our heads…but that does not diminish the life bird sighting or my efforts on the hill. 🙂 Sony RX10iv at 600mm. 1/320th @ f4 @ ISO 6400. Processed in Polarr. (I found myself at ISO 6400 way too often in the dim light under the heavy canopy of Rain- and Cloud-forest in Honduras. The Sony’s one inch sensor does better than the small sensor in your average P&S, but still not as well as a full frame sensor might have. I am still happy with the compromise though…as I would not have gotten a full frame camera and lens down and back up that mountain.)


  1. Reply
    Jock Elliott June 9, 2018

    Sorry to hear about your “Montezuma’s revenge.”

    Wonderful photos, though!

    • Reply
      lightshedder June 9, 2018


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