Site 8

Owl Riches

 

Site 8

Some places takes years for screech owls to come by, this site however, seem to be ideal for the owls as there frequently seems to be more than one pair vying for the boxes here. From the owner:

The first owl was a red morph –[ perhaps the returning female of last season?
It arrived on October 27th. This red individual returned to our slot box on the 28th The same day I saw another red owl roosting in a tree hollow near by. Since then, the first red owl has visited our boxes 3-4 times a week. While this individual has been a frequent visitor; it hasn’t been the only one. I have seen a grey individual with brownish feathers on its chest and a pale grey individual with less distinct field marks.
To date I can confirm the presence of four individual owls: 2 red and 2 grey. They have been seen in our yard and at two other places within a quarter mile of our house..
Cheers

PS.The bad news is that at least one squirrel has managed to get into the new box

Seems at least one of the squirrel here after a few years figure out how to navigate into these boxes, hopefully the new box will be difficult enough to prevent a full scale take over…the old box was gnawed (they will gnaw through the vinyl and wood) to the point it was no longer squirrel resistant.

 

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

P1070561

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.

Nicely Done

Site 8

It seems the owls have taken up here once again, they had been nesting near by the last 2 years, but this year they decided to take up here…from the owner

photos taken during the past week (June 5 – June 9). We watched at least 3
baby owls leave their nesting box this evening (June 10th). One baby remained in the box and it was too dark to see if any others remained in the box with it.

mom(red) and dad
11407147_10204055806909720_6755113632709746845_n

2 owlets peeking out
10672255_10204055807589737_4596332257191212401_n

Recently fledged owlet and mom…
10420419_10204057722957620_1840709724764161818_n

my notes: thank you for the updates and great shots especially the last one!

Catching up on Updates

I have a bit of a back log of updates hopefully over the next couple weeks I’ll be able to get up to date as we get close to nesting season…so I will start these from the owner of Site 8,

From Jan 16th

Last night I was lucky enough to see the red owl leave the slot box at about 4:55 pm. It was getting pretty dark by then, but I was able to track its flight to a tree on the edge of our yard. Almost immediately afterwards I saw a second owl fly in from the direction of the grey owl’s tree hollow. It met the red owl and although their silhouettes were partially blocked by a tree, it was apparent the two owls copulated! I moved to a window closer to the activity and I could still see the silhouettes of both owls.
I was able to confirm that the red owl is the female and the grey owl the male. Both owls lingered on their respective perches for nearly ten minutes before they flew off.

From Feb 11th

I haven’t seen the red female and the grey male together since our trip to NYC on Jan 24th to 26th. For the past two weeks only the red owl has been seen regularly in our yard, usually in the slot box at sunrise. On a few occasions the slot box has appeared to be vacant all day; only to see an owl appear at about sunset or even a little later. In the dimming light of dusk I cannot say for sure whether the owl was the red or the grey or even a new individual. The tree hollow used by the grey male is filled with snow, so I can no longer see two owls simultaneously.

Today the red female came to the slot box at dawn and was present at sunset. I checked a couple of times to see if she was still in the box as it got darker. By about 5:30 she had left the box. At about 5:39 I scanned the yard (looking west) to see if I could spot her silhouette. I spotted her in a short time and almost immediately a second owl swooped and copulated with her! I assume the first owl was the red female, but I could not identify the second owl, which flew off as quickly as it arrived. I got a second glance of it as it flew toward and over my vantage point at the door to our back deck. The female remained on her perch for a moment and then flew off. An owl appeared in the slot box. Seconds later an owl was following the same route toward me and over the house. It was too dark to see color, but the incident confirms a pair of owls are active in the neighborhood even though only one of them has been seen during the past two weeks.

From Feb 24th

Last night my wife and I watched the red female until she left the slot box at about 5:45pm. She perched in the crabapple tree for about 10 minutes until a second owl flew in from the west. After a short pause, the female flew across our yard and landed near the second owl. THIS OWL quickly flew over and copulated with the female. After that the female returned to the slot box and we lost sight of the male in the darkness. The red female very rarely returns to the slot box after leaving it at dusk; so something was different. This morning I watched an owl emerge from the round box to perch in the crabapple tree for about 5 minutes and then it flew into the slot box at about 6 am. In that light, the owl seemed different and as the light improved the owl is grey! Since the light was good I took 3 sets of photos to commemorate the event! Then … Surprise, SURPRISE the female appeared!

2015-02-24 Grey-Owl (11) 2015-02-24 Both Owls (4)

My notes:
Thank for the updates, what a great shot of the pair!

Screech Owl Central

Site 8

This is not the first time the seemingly abundance of screech owls have been noted here but its impressive none-the-less. 3 owls seen from one property.

Good Morning,

There are THREE OWLS in our neighborhood at sunrise this morning and I could see all three from inside our home. 1) red owl in the slot box 2) the ‘new’ grey Owl that appeared this weekend 3) another grey owl in a near by…. Ever since Sunday morning, when both the Red and the Gray Screech Owl appeared together in our yard, I’ve been wondering where the Gray Owl went. The two owls flew in together and perched on the same branch of the apple tree. During the instant that it took for the red owl fly to the slot box, the gray owl disappeared. I hadn’t seen it since it flew off. This morning the yard birds were making a loud demonstration around this tree in our neighbor’s yard. I checked this hole several times and finally saw the GRAY OWL! It remained visible while I got outside and carefully approached the tree. As I aimed the camera, it vanished into the hole! It reappeared later but it was dusk by then. The good news is that I can see this roost from the same vantage point that I use to see the two owl boxes.

Today I will post the two photos I took today 2014-12-04. It was before sunrise, so the exposure was too long for my unsteady Nikon with the 200mm lens. I could see Owls #1 & #2 from the door to the deck in our back yard. I could see #3 from the living room windows.

2014-12-04 roost grey Owl (5)wm 2014-12-04 red owl (1)

2 of the 3 owls. Great update, thank you!

2014 Wrap Up

Site 1
Massachusetts
Screech Owls,
Male=red phased
Female=gray phased
First Egg: mid march
# of Eggs……………..at least 4
First Hatch: mid april
# Hatched…………….4
Fledged ……………….4

Site 2
Massachusetts
No screech owls…It seems a Pair of Barred Owl have been fairly regularly heard late summer and fall 2014, even in the day. Oh and the leucistic red-tailed hawk was last seen 3/13/2014.

Site 3
Massachusetts
Screech Owls
Male=gray phased (confirmed 2011)
Female=gray phased (new for 2013 nesting)
First Egg: early april
# of Eggs ………….4
# Hatched………… 4
Fledged……………. 4
(a day or 2 after June 8th, 2014)

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 1
Fledged ……………. at least 1

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

Site 9
Massachusetts
site 9 relocated 2014, Owl in Box with-in 3 days of installation (new record):
Screech Owls,
Male= Gray phase
Female= Red phased
First Egg: mid march
# of Eggs……………..at least 1
First Hatch: mid april
# Hatched…………….at least 1
Fledged ……………….at least 1

2014 Totals:
screech owl eggs ……10 +
screech owl fledged…..9+ (+ 4) fledged near (but off) site 8 massachusetts
1+ Maryland.

Pairing Up

Site 8

Update from the owner

At about 6:10 the red owl arrived in the yard. It perched in two different spots. Then it entered the slot box. It dropped out of sight and reappeared. The red owl then flew to a perch opposite the round hole box. It soon returned to the slot box which had a grey owl perched in the entrance. Both owls were briefly together at the entrance of the slot box. The grey dropped inside first, followed by the red. All this took place within a span of about 5 minutes. I will let you know it the owls reappear or have left while I ‘ve been writing this to you….

(later pm)
I was afraid the pair might have skeedadled while I was writing the email this morning, because they had disappeared. The red owl reappeared later on, but I couldn’t account for the gray until now when the pair came up to sun themselves. This is the first time I’ve seen two owls side-by-side in the same box! The last time I had side-by-side owls was during the last years of our apple tree, about 14 years ago.

2014-03-27 Pair Owls (6)

Excellent update! thanks!

Then There was Red

Site 8

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.

2014-01-20 red owl (6) 2014-01-20 Red Owl (12)a

Thanks again for the excellent update!

Long Overdue 2013 Wrap up

This should have been done 4-5 months ago…good to get caught up.
If 2012 was a’down’ year, This year was a really down years compared to previous.
As Site 1 failed to fledge 2 owlets that died in box.

Site 1
Massachusetts
Screech Owls,
Male=red phased
Female=gray phased
First Egg: begining of march
# of Eggs……………..at least 2
First Hatch: ?
# Hatched…………….2
Fledged ……………….0 (both owlets died in box)

Site 2
Massachusetts
No screech owls…It seems a Pair of Barred Owl have moved in near by as they were heard regularly through the spring, summer and fall, even in the day. Oh and the leucistic red-tailed hawk was last seen 12/29/2013.

Site 3
Massachusetts
Screech Owls,Lost the red phased female (seen october 2012), replaced by a gray phase female
Male=gray phased (confirmed 2011)
Female=gray phased (new for 2013 nesting)
First Egg: end of march/early april
# of Eggs ………….3
# Hatched………… 3
Fledged……………. 3
(a day or 2 after June 2, 2013)

Site 4

Massachusetts
No screech owls

Site 5
Maryland may not have nested for 2013
Screech Owls,
Male= ?
Female=red phased
First Egg ???
# of Eggs…………. ??
First Hatch ???
# Hatched ………… ??
Fledged …………….??

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,
did not nest at site 8, but nested near by with 4 owlets observed to have fledge!
Male= Gray phased (browner)
Female=Gray phased

Site 9
Massachusetts
Owners moved, site to be relocated: no screech owls seen, barred owls heard frequently.

2013 Totals:
screech owl eggs ……5 +
screech owl fledged…..3 + 4 fledged near (but off) site 8