Tawny Owls can be very vocal at this time of year, and we’re going to be generous – hear that ‘ kewick ’/ ’tu-whoo’ interplay between male and female and you can tick it, because these are nocturnal birds that are very difficult to see. Barn Owls, on the other hand, hunt at dusk and sometimes well before, and at this time of year can be seen everywhere from coastal saltmarshes to roadside verges and pastureland. If it’s been rainy the previous night, they’re particularly likely to be out early, making up for lost time. Poor waterproofing on their feathers means they can’t fly well in the rain. Little Owls are also best looked for at dusk, although on warm afternoons they may also be found basking in sunny spots, keeping one eye out for large insects. Short-eared Owls behave rather similarly to Hen Harriers at this time of year, moving from upland moors to coastal sites and marshes, where they can be seen quartering the land in search of rodent prey. Long-eared Owls remain as secretive as ever, but they too pop up at coastal marshes, and also form roosts in dense hedges and thickets. Even there, they can be incredibly hard to make out, but a dawn or dusk stake-out should pay dividends.