Not be deterred by the prediction of a massive winter storm I headed out early Saturday morning to see if I could track down any owls. I headed up to the Pole farm and encountered snow on the way which was rather surprising. By the time I got to the Pole farm is was snowing and blowing pretty heavily. I started by looking for Short eared owls (SEO) but if there were any, they were tightly tucked in and not braving the inclement weather. I initially thought that this might be too early for SEO but I saw two SEOs at this location last year in early January. Something that I did not realize is that SEO migration is irruptive in nature, so this could very well be a slow year for them.
Anyway, from there I swung by a nice little pond that has several hundred Canada geese and a single snow goose tucked in with the crowds. With snow in my ear and a chilled nose I headed over to my Long eared owl roosting spot to see if I could track them down. Sadly I found no owls, nor did I find any evidence of owls. I searched the evergreens for Saw whet but struck out in this department too.
I decided the snow wasn’t great for birding so I jumped back in my heated car and made for home. The snow cleared out pretty quickly heading North and I decided to stop by a nice field close to home. The field has a small cedar grove on the edge of it and I found pellets there last year in March. After doing my best CSI imitation I struck out again. On the plus side I did manage to scare up a few Winter wrens which were great.
One thing about owling is that persistence generally pays off. The more places you look, the luckier you become – generally. I had another hour to kill so I decided to swing by Round valley reservoir. Last winter I heard some crows harassing something in a pretty large evergreen stand and I decided to check it out. Again, I found nothing although the location is EXCELLENT for owls. Even though I struck out I will definitely go back to this evergreen stand to check it out later in the winter. How was your weekend? Any owls?