Month: February 2010

Storm

Just got power back after ~60 hrs…80+ mph winds, lots of trees down…
no reports of major damage to any of the boxes, the house on the martin pole turned 90 degrees, and has been corrected. Site #1 has some trees down, but nothing affecting the nest.

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More Squirrel Issues

Still not with a SQResistant type box, (good news)
Site 3, It looks like the Forsythia grew a bit, and allowed an access, jumping point for a gray squirrel to take over the box on the Martin Pole. The Box has been cleaned out of the leaves, branches pruned, now will the owl return? will it find a companion? Telescoping martin poles are very user friendly when it comes to box maintenance.

Nesting Already?!

An egg, site 1! Although this shot doesn’t show it well, the egg was visible in its entirety for a brief moment when mom was up in the opening. From the information I have gathered this is ~ a month early from normal, which in the north east prime egg laying time is, mid March-mid April. Hopefully, late winter weather won’t effect the success. Good news, there seems to be plenty of prey around given the cache of what appears to be a mouse. Only 2 sites (2 boxes total) have a box camera, this happens to be one of them. The fact that this egg is somewhat visible suggest that incubation has not yet started, which I guess is not unusual from reading other screech owl cam chronologies. Also, this confirms the Gray Phase here is the Female.

New, Site 8

Added New site to the ‘trail’.
Site Description
Site 8
Owls none (but does have a history of screech in the area)
Habitat Rural/Suburban wood lots, lawns, couple roads, near by brook,woods
Cavities 2 SQR Boxes(1 slot, one Circle)
Nesting = none
History SQR boxes up Feb ’10

Squirrel Take Over

Well at least it was not a box,but of the natural cavity in Site #1, first evidence was leaves in the entrance, but then sitting proudly, confirmation. Its a wonder Screech Owls can ever get a natural nest site.

anyway as an update the gray phase is still in the slot box, the red phase was alternating between the circle hole box and the natural cavity, well until the squirrel took it over, I am starting to wonder if the gray phase is the female, because of the consistency of roosting site. Hopefully time will tell.

Natural Cavity

Looks like the red phased found the natural cavity in site #1, which is the grey phase ‘favorite’ cold weather hole, the gray owl was in the slot box… that is a benefit of having two boxes or a natural cavity and a box near by,if the are the same color, it may be the only way to tell if there is a ‘couple’.