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OWL-ing

Posted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 9:01 am
by sealion
Last night, October 8, at 8:00 PM six souls, including Jason Sodergren, met at Jason's home and banding operation. The evening was mostly clear with some Westerly breezes, in the 40 F degree range. We foregathered in the lower parking lot where we listened to recordings of various owl vocalizations. The first thing we heard in the dusky light was a distant flock of geese, heard but not seen.

We then went up to the mist nets and listened for owls. The first mist net check revealed a first year Saw-whet, seen by all. The owl was subsequently examined, weighed, measured, banded and released. We then went back to listening and were rewarded with two times close-by chirps of another Saw-whet, then later another Saw-whet doing the more familiar beeping call. Somewhere in this time frame we heard a Red Squirrel chattering, only to wonder if the squirrel was getting attention from an owl. I think it is unusual for a squirrel to vocalize at night.

Then at 9:30 four of us drove over to the Carl Wynn Nature Center. We played various calls and got response by some chirps from a nearby Saw-whet. We called it a night at 10:00 pm.

Tally; 1 flock of geese, 4-5 Saw-whet Owls, 1 Red Squirrel.

Given the previous night's wicked weather and postponement, this was a "Great Night to Owl"!

Gary Lyon