Less than a month to go - ? Screech owl ?

I am getting owl fever! Fall is upon us which means that I’ll soon have the opportunity to potentially see Long eared owls, Short eared owls and if I’m VERY lucky Great horned and Saw whet. I’m also hoping that the Screech owl box gets another visitor like last year, although I promise they’ll be treated much better this time. I was looking through my picture I took last year of the Screech owl in my box and I realized that it’s less than a month before the one year anniversary. Will the owl come back to the box this year?

Being the optimist that I am, I’ve made a few improvements to the site/box. I added more flashing around the tree and I’m also adding a larger roof area with flashing on top. All of this is being done to discourage the squirrels. I am not delusional enough to imagine that I can ever keep them out, I just hope that the new measure will discourage them. When I cleaned out the box this week, I realized that the squirrels had totally removed the perch I put in and they also made a huge mess in the box. I replaced all the nesting material and placed a fresh batch in the box. I removed the screws for the perch as I decided to leave the nesting area as open as possible. At this stage I am doing all I can to make the nest as attractive as possible. I’ll post some pictures of the new improved nest box when I get a chance. If nothing else you have to give me credit for being stubborn! I’ve always wanted a nesting owl pair in my garden and I hope 2009 is my year….


Camera Trap Codger said...

We've been hearing a screech owl regularly around the house, so I think he is aware of all 4 nest boxes, and with luck will use one next spring. Good luck with the owl watching.

Owlman said...

Thanks Codger - I am hoping that my flashing improvements will deter the flying rats, although I kind of doubt it. As you know squirrels are impossibly good at getting into boxes. Did you continue experimenting with the boxes you have up? I've only heard my owl once and haven't seen any action besides squirrels in the box. BTW, I’ve been meaning to ask you about a good beginner’s camera for trapping. Although I don’t have much spare cash at the moment I would love to get into camera trapping at some stage. I have raccoons and fox around my place and I’d love to start setting camera traps for them at some stage. Any advice on a good beginner’s camera would be appreciated.

RuthieJ said...

Good luck with your owl.

tell me about "camera trapping."
would that be the same as what we do with our trail camera to get pictures of deer (and whatever else happens to walk by) out where we deer hunt?

Owlman said...

Hi RuthieJ, yes that's camera trapping in a nut shell. I'd love to set up a camera trap around my garden to see what goes on at night. I often wonder whether the Raccoons are still nesting in my dead tree and I'd love to snap pics of the Red fox at the back. I would HIGHLY recommend that you check out the codger's blog. He's taken some amazing snaps with his camera traps.