As every birder knows, seeing a Barn Owl in NI is very difficult. Breeding numbers are at a very low level and the species is facing an uncertain future. It is however positive to report that at least one nest has produced a fledged bird in 2012 and there is photographic proof! The picture below was taken by Alistair Prentice at an undisclosed location. Alistair has a special hide and is also in possession of a Schedule 1 license that enables him to photograph birds like Barn Owls in the wild. He has also liaised with a conservation organisation about protection of this site. This is probably the best picture of a Barn Owl in NI for some time - so please enjoy and respect! Well done to Alistair for not only the shot but his efforts to protect this vulnerable species.