A red phase screech owl that is…an update from the owner…
The ‘pale gray’ owl had been seen regularly until the arrival of another owl in early December. I believe this visitor was a gray morph owl, that briefly used the round box and explored the neighborhood for a few days. The red owl first appeared in mid-November. Since its first, brief sighting in our yard, on Dec. 5th, the red owl returned to roost here on an intermittent basis. The ‘pale gray’ owl continued to stay in our box for several days and hasn’t been seen since mid-December. Recently, the red owl has been seen in our yard more frequently, 16 out of 21 days this month. Sometimes I get up before dawn to monitor owl activity in our backyard. In the pre-dawn darkness, I have seen an owl fly into and fly out of the slot box on several occasions. This pattern sometimes includes a visit to the round box. I used to think that owls would stay out hunting all night and they would only return to use the box as a roost from dawn to dusk. I now realize that the box is used when-ever the owl wants to.
These photos were taken yesterday, the focus isn’t crisp but I now have a photo of the red owl. First Image was taken about 4:30pm and the second was taken about ½ hour after sunset. It is a 1+sec. exposure while I held my camera tightly to my telescope on its tripod.
Thanks again for the excellent update!