Wildlife Photography – Owl vs Raccoon

What if there was a fight between an owl and a raccoon… who do you suppose would win? The event that follows caught me by surprise, and it was over in a moment. Fortunately, I had my camera ready and I was lucky enough to capture the epic battle from start to finish. Scroll down to check out some of my best wildlife photography.

wildlife - Raccoon in tree

I was walking in the forest and happened to look up, spotting a raccoon in a tree. The raccoon was climbing towards a hole in the trunk which I now believe was an owl’s nest.

birds - Barred owl flying

Suddenly, I heard a high pitched scream and turned, pointing my camera. A large barred owl was flying straight at the raccoon. I’ve rarely captured an owl in flight and I tried my best to keep the camera centred on the bird.

barred owl in flight

I could barely believe my luck. All I could do was hold my finger down on the shutter, blasting off a high-speed burst as the bird approached.

owl attacking raccon

The raccoon heard the scream and turned to face the owl, ready to fight. Here comes momma to defend the nest!

owl strikes raccoon

Bam! The owl struck the raccoon with its talons, beating with its wings as it flew past. I was so close to the action I swear I could almost feel the breeze from those wings!

owl strikes raccoon

The owl turned around and flew back up at the raccoon, striking at it again. The raccoon panicked and disappeared behind the tree trunk, trying to avoid the owl. After this, I lost sight of both animals.

female barred owl

Sometime later, momma reappeared, perched high in a nearby tree. Check out the look on her face! Who’s the boss? Who?

More by Keith Boone

Do you enjoy nature and wildlife photography? Be sure to check out my earlier post about herons and eagles.


Please see my collection of Nature and Wildlife photos on Fine Art America: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/keith-boone/collections/nature+and+wildlife


12 thoughts on “Wildlife Photography – Owl vs Raccoon

  • February 26, 2020 at 10:52 am

    Thanks on your marvelous posting! I really enjoyed
    reading it, you happen to be a great author. I will always bookmark your blog and definitely will come back in the foreseeable future.
    I want to encourage that you continue your great writing, have a nice morning!

    • February 26, 2020 at 11:08 pm

      I appreciate the comment, thank you very much!

  • February 25, 2020 at 10:12 pm

    That’s amazing, Keith. Really top notch and something most people would never see, let alone think to get photos. You have a rare gift, my friend.

    • February 26, 2020 at 8:51 am

      Thanks so much, Chris. That’s very kind of you to say!

  • February 21, 2020 at 7:13 am

    Wowzers Keith!! Good thing you were on the ball! Fabulous camera captures! Don’t mess with mama!!

    • February 21, 2020 at 8:35 am

      The owl is a raptor and absolutely fearless in defending it’s young. It was a real thrill to capture these shots. Thank you, Christine!

  • February 20, 2020 at 5:43 pm

    Wow 🤭😳 how lucky you were to capture this Keith! I’m sure this all went down so darn fast, I can’t even imagine. You really got great photos in those split seconds. I wonder what the raccoon wanted in the nest? Do they eat the rags and or the young babies?

    • February 20, 2020 at 7:05 pm

      Hi LoloMarie. Yes, this happened pretty quick. I’m not sure what was in the nest at this point, probably the young chicks.

  • February 19, 2020 at 12:41 pm

    Brilliant photography – well done Keith

    • February 19, 2020 at 12:51 pm

      Thanks so much for the comment, Christine!

  • February 19, 2020 at 10:20 am

    Fortune favoured the owl with some home ground advantage. Great shots, could have had a bit higher aperture but in a moment like that, there is no time to play 🙂

    • February 19, 2020 at 10:27 am

      You’re right, this was a split-second thing. I didn’t even zoom in, I shot wide and cropped later.

Comments are closed.