The Little Owl Hide

My little owls are in a characterful derelict Farmhouse. They roost there most of the year and nest between April and August. The little owls regularly perch in the photogenic window, which has become the signature shot of this hide. In front of the hide, several photogenic perches have been installed, including old fence posts and a gate.

I’ve salvaged the old timbers from the nearby derelict barns for a more authentic feel and in keeping with the farming environment. These are all positioned for the best available backgrounds and light. Click here to read my Little Owl Hide photo guide. It’s full of top  tips and advice to get the best out of your session.

When the little owls nest in the farmhouse, the activity in front of the hide is incredible. The little owls fly to and from the perches and feeders for literally hours, as well as returning to the window with small rodents, birds and large invertebrate prey. When the chicks are old enough, they make their way to the window and perch for long periods, waiting for the parent birds to return with food. There are fantastic photo opportunities for a wide-range of behaviours

The farmhouse is south-facing, so the window is exposed to beautiful side-light when the sun rises. During nesting season, the perches are in full sun for the majority of the day, with at least two perches position for the glorious evening light. With the light, perches, varied backgrounds, window and high activity levels, you can build a stunning portfolio in just a single session.

The Essentials

Main Subject: Little Owl

Other Subjects: Woodpecker

Peak Season: May to August

Times: Sunrise to sunset

Capacity: One Photographer

EQV Focal Length*: 400-600mm

Photo Opps: Portraits, feeding, landing

Habitat: Farmhouse, window, perches

Position: Faces 320° North-West

Viewing: 1400x500mm, scrim, shutter

Accessibility: Steps into hide

Type of Hide: PhotoHut Mini

*Focal Length: All ProHide sites are designed using full-frame DSLRs and a variety of lenses. The primary testing lenses are a 400mm f/2.8 and 600mm f/4. If you have a crop-factor DSLR, then multiply your lens’ focal length by the crop factor. For example, 300mm lens x 1.6x crop factor = EQV 480mm

The Hide

My hide, the PhotoHut Mini™,  is possibly the most comfortable hide you will have ever used. It is a 1.5m³ timber hide, built to the same exacting standards as its bigger brother – fully lined, insulated, shutters, scrim netting, blackout curtains, very comfy height-adjustable swivel chair, height-adjustable footrest, rock-solid shelf for my tripod head plates or beanbags – room for a tripod if you prefer (but I recommend using the shelf).

There are two heavy tripod-head plates, constructed from a machined aluminium. They are perfect for mounting a tripod-head and enable you to move the camera position freely from side to side, while providing a rock-solid platform for your tripod head. These are in the hide at all times along with one Jobu gimbal head and an Arca-Swiss style plate with allen key.

The PhotoHut Mini™ has been installed onto a 500mm high timber platform (steps are always there) so you can shoot at a reduced angle to the window. The added benefit of the platform is that you’re shooting at a slight downward angle for the perches, so the backgrounds are especially clean when shooting at f/4 – f/5.6.

Comfortable and run to a very high standard

I spend half my life in hides around the world. Those run by ProHides I have found to be comfortable and more importantly run to a very high standard with regards to consideration of the wildlife and secondly that of the photographer (which is the way round it should be!). Elliott was professional, very well informed Continue Reading

Richard Costin Professional Little Owl Hide

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Remote Cameras

If you would like to set-up a remote camera, you can now add this option during booking.  You must be practiced and able to set up your equipment quickly. You will need: a low-angle camera support, such as a low-working tripod, GorillaPod or beanbag; Preferably a radio remote shutter release – IR is ok, but not as reliable and it’s too far for a wired shutter release. For best results, use a wide-angle lens in the 14-24mm or 16-35mm range. You will also need the necessary connection cables and charged batteries.

Before we reach the farmhouse, you will have an opportunity to make sure it is all working and mount your camera on the support. However, I would greatly appreciate it if you could setup and test your remotes before arrival. Once tested, you’ll be shown the designated area for remote cameras. Once setup, you’ll be settled in the hide, but please do not leave again to make any adjustments. Again, if in any doubt, leave the remote at home. This is for advanced users only as we cannot linger in view of the little owls.

Little Owl Hide Booking

When open, the form below will take you through the live availability, booking and payment. Payment can be made directly with a valid payment card using PayPal. You do not need a PayPal account, just a valid debit or credit card. Simply select “Checkout as Guest”.

Upon booking, you will immediately receive a booking confirmation email – please contact me ASAP if you do not receive this. Shortly before your booking date, you will also receive full joining instructions via email, including the meeting place. I have also put together a comprehensive guide to photographing the Little Owls at the hide which I highly recommend reading before your session.

Cancellation Policy

Please do contact me as soon as possible if you are unable to make your booking. I can arrange to either reschedule, offer vouchers so that you can rebook when at your convenience, or refund your payment. Unfortunately, I cannot accept cancellations within 14 days of your booking, as it will be extremely difficult to fill at short notice. Cancellations within 14 days are non-refundable. For more information, please view the ProHides Terms & Conditions.

For lunch, dinner and hotel reservations at The Royal Oak in Bishopstone, please call 01793 790481, email them at, or book online here.