Tawny Owl (Strix aluco). Words & picture by Matt Sewell.
Perhaps the wisest of all owls, or the wisest- looking anyway, especially whilst spotted during the day half asleep, like an old professor caught napping in his study. Tawny Owl seems very huggable; it’s hard to resist going in for a cuddle until you see those talons and fearsome beak hidden behind all the fluff. Tawnys are responsible for the classic ‘to-wit towoo’, but I’m informed it’s not actually one bird making that song: the male makes the ‘to-wit’ and a lady calls back ‘to-woo’. It’s just nice to know there are
so many around.