Monday, May 20, 2013

I Get to Visit Maggie the Barred Owl

I stopped by Greenwood in a light rain and wondered if I would find any of the Barred Owls. Two seconds after I stepped out of the van I heard the familiar hiss of a young owl. I had to walk around a bit to pinpoint the spot but I found Maggie, the youngest of two Barred Owls born next to our house this year, high up in an oak tree. Too far for any good shots so all I could do was say 'hi'.

I decided to walk the sidewalk around the lake and see if anything else was out in the drizzle. Not much. I got half-way around the lake was was about to turn back when I made out a silhouette of a hunched figure under the Cypress trees. I knew it was a Black-crowned Night Heron. The first adult I have seen this year. It was deep in the gloom but I had to try anyway.

Black-crowned Night Heron

I headed back to get out of the sprinkles and heard an adult Barred Owl calling back by the bridge. I could not locate that bird but right after I crossed the bridge, Maggie soared down from her original perch, flew right toward me, and landed in a tree along the sidewalk. She wasn't alone. Several Blue Jays and Red-winged Blackbirds began mobbing her as she tried to find a tight grip on the branch.

Barred Owl

The smaller birds soon gave up on their harassment and went back to their business and Maggie kept looking around for that parent that was calling. I left her to the task and headed off in search of other birds for the morning.

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