Month: October 2015

More Owl Returns

Site 9

Note from owner:

She has settled in nicely and has been there everyday since Sunday October 18. On Sunday morning she was not in the box. Around 12 noon I saw something fly by and low and behold it was the female owl back in the slot in her box! This is the first time that I have ever seen the Owls fly in other than early in the morning. We have a resident Coopers Hawk who has been frequenting our bird feeder so this may be the reason she couldn’t get back in her box. When she flies out at around 6:10 pm she flies into our back wetlands and is vocalizing with another owl! We are looking forward to another fun owl season!

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3rd Year of Good Snowy Owling !!???

There are some early indication that the winter of 2015-2016 could be yet another good ‘irruption’ year.  Starting with the eastern seaboard record setting winter of 2013-2014. Last winter 2014-2015 was above average with snowy owls but sightings got tougher as the record snows came a the end of January. This year Wisconsin seems to be early snowy owl migration central.    http://www.jsonline.com/sports/outdoors/snowy-owls-fly-south-for-the-fall-b99601193z1-335411881.html       As this article attests.   Who knows how this will translate along the eastern seaboard, as the irruption could be targeted in the great lakes region, but hopefully it will at least mean another above average year for the northeast.

Owling Challenge Last and This Years

Last years Owling Challenge between my wife and me ended in a tie, it was 3 to 3 going into mid winter, then the snows just kept going and it wasn’t really possible to walk with a 3 foot plus snow pack for the rest of the winter.

This years Owling Challenge has started and so far neither of us has earned a point. I have seen 2 owls in the last 3 days, first was a barred owl that the flew across the road as I was driving our kids home from school, alas no photo, no one else saw it, or so they say (they may be in the tank for their mom) so NO point. Then today it was a great horned owl I found (with the help of some blue jays and other irritated song birds) as I took a quick stroll at some trails that are right on my way home from work. But since I was alone, the strict judging criteria of the challenge means NO point. But I did get a quick shot in the fading light.
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Tis the Season,

Site 3

Here in Massachusetts, this right around when screech owls start using hollows more often, as the weather gets colder and the leaves start dropping. Right on cue, it appears as the Female has decided to spend the day in the ‘pole’ box (on a purple martin pole).

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Compare to this shot of the this particular female her first year, (taken march 2013) looks like the facial borders have darken up a bit with age, but otherwise so close that it appears to be the same owl.

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2015 summary

Site 1
Massachusetts
No Nesting this year, female was seen last in april, male never seen after the snows of winter, a great horned and a barred owl were also near by but also seemed driven out by the deep snow pack of mid-late winter.
Screech Owls,
Male=red phased (seemed to disappear)
Female=gray phased
First Egg:
# of Eggs……………..
First Hatch:
# Hatched……………
Fledged ……………….

Site 2
Massachusetts
No screech owls…sporadic calling of barred owls through out year.

Site 3
Massachusetts
Screech Owls
Male=gray phased (confirmed 2011)
Female=gray phased (first seen 2013 nesting)
First Egg: early april
# of Eggs ………….unknown
# Hatched………… unkonwn
Fledged……………. at least 2 (early June 2015)

Male seen here near nest box a few weeks before fleging

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Site 4

Massachusetts
No screech owls

Site 5
Maryland successful nesting but details lacking
Screech Owls,
Male= ?
Female=red phased
First Egg ???
# of Eggs…………. ??
First Hatch ???
# Hatched ………… at least 2
Fledged ……………. at least 2

Site 6
Massachusetts
No screech owls, great horned owl(s) still heard occ.

Site 7
Massachusetts
no screech owls

Site 8
Massachusetts
Screech Owls, at least 2 which nested nearby
again in 2014 did not nest at site 8, but nested near by with 4 owlets observed to have fledge!
Male= Gray phased (browner)
Female=Gray phased
First Egg …………Early/mid April
# of Eggs………….at least 4
First Hatch…………Early/Mid May
# Hatched …………4
Fledged ……………. 4 (3 fledged June 10th, one shortly there after)

Site 9
Massachusetts
site 9 relocated 2014, Owl in Box with-in 3 days of installation (new record): after the 1rst year, a completely different pairing nested for 2015.
Screech Owls,
Male= Red phase (new for 2015)
Female= Gray phased (new for 2015
First Egg:…………….. 3/28/2015
# of Eggs…………….5
First Hatch: …………..4/30/2015
# Hatched…………….5
Fledged ……………….3

2014 Totals:
screech owl eggs ……11 + (massachusetts) 2+ Maryland
screech owl fledged…..10+ (massachusetts)
2+ Maryland.