8/18/2008

Screech owl garden visit

Last night I was watching the Olympics when my pager (fire department) went off. Apparently someone was using their clothing dryer at 11:30 at night and now they smelled something burning. Oh well better go check it out. I jumped in the car and dashed down to the fire house, jumped on the truck etc etc. The good news is that luckily it was a minor dryer fire and we pretty much just stood around looking good. I got back home after shooting the breeze with the rest of the gang and I decided I was starving. The only thing I could find that looked remotely like food was popcorn. Oh well popped some popcorn and chowed down while watching another random Olympic sport (apparently anything that remotely looks like a sport can get you a gold medal).

I finally headed to bed at 1:30 and as I was brushing my teeth I heard a Screech Owl! HOLY SMOKES an owl in my garden!!!!!!! I listened very carefully and realized the Screech owl was calling from the location of the nest box. Unfortunately the owl box is currently being used by a family of squirrels and I highly doubted that the owl had evicted them. The owl called for a good 5 minutes and when it stopped I ran through to the living room and I fired up the owl cam to see what was happening in the box. As expected the squirrel family was happily napping in the box…. As I was watching the squirrels and listening to the night sounds I realized that I was a little out of breath – wow this was exciting. Hearing an owl in my yard in August is like talking about football in June!

Although the owl wasn’t in the owl box, I know that it knows about the box and maybe it will move in when the squirrels move out. I’ll keep listening now that I know there's an owl around and hopefully I’ll hear him/her again.

9 comments:

Patrick Belardo said...

Very cool!!!

On Saturday, we had a fire incident in our condo complex. A small mulch fire started next to my neighbor's (same building) A/C unit. No clue how it started but they evacuated us all and called in 2 fire trucks in full gear. The fire had been put out by my neighbor already. Luckily someone coming home saw the fire. It could have been bad!

Owlman said...

Wow Patrick, glad to hear you're ok and that it turned out to be minor. We've had some condo fires around here and they can turn major pretty quickly!

Susan Gets Native said...

Yay for you, having a calling Screech Owl in the yard! I'll bet you money when those darn squirrels leave, that SO will think about a roosting place. WHOOT!

Owlman said...

Susan I REALLY hope so. The squirrels should be leaving shortly and then I'll be glued to the owl cam to see if there is any SO action.

Owlman said...

Susan I REALLY hope so. The squirrels should be leaving shortly and then I'll be glued to the owl cam to see if there is any SO action.

noflickster said...

Very cool, hope your nest box becomes a proper owl box! I recently heard the first screech-owl of the year in the woods behind our place. I really need to clean out our owl box.

Looking forward to hearing what happens!
Mike

Owlman said...

Thanks for popping in Mike. Honestly since the first time I saw an Owl (Barn Owl) I have wanted one nesting in my yard. I tried to attract a Spotted Eagle Owl in SA, but looking back the box design was wrong and the location was terrible! I am hopeful that this attempt will be successful I just need to be patient - something I am sorely lacking.... This year I have a have the owl cam in so I won't be tempted to keep peeking which will dramatically reduce any stress on the owls. The squirrels seem to have moved on, so I’ll do some cleanup in the box this weekend. I also need to move the cam a little as it’s moved a tad. Lastly I want to see if I can stop the cam from moving around when animals enter and exit the box.

Thanks again for stopping in – much appreciated!

flowergirl said...

Came here from gallicissa's blog. How's the owl box doing these days?

Check out the great horned owl, Bubo bubo on my iste when you have the time!

madraswanderer.blogspot.com

Owlman said...

Hey Flowergirl, the owl box is ready to roll. I've added some more flashing around the trunk and I added a larger roof to try to keep the squirrels out. Now I just need an owl or two! Thanks for popping in and I'll definitely check out the owl on your site when I get a chance.

Incredible photos shared by the Flickr community group - Owls of North America. Click on the play button to begin the slideshow - ENJOY!