2/20/2009

Off to Disney World- warm weather yippeee!

On Monday my whole clan is heading off to Orlando Florida to check out Mickey Mouse and his buddies. The kids are already bouncing off the walls with excitement. So far they're excited about Mickey mouse, Donald Duck, the princesses, roller coasters and fireworks. I'm pretty confident that we'll be able to meet all those expectations and MUCH MUCH more.

The most surprising part of the build up to the trip has been that my 2 year old son is as excited as his sister! Both of them are balls of energy so I expect that my wife and I will be WIPED out by the time their bed time rolls around. I’m a kid at heart so it’s going to be awesome spending time chilling with the kids and relaxing in a place with warm weather and blue skies. I doubt I'll do much birding, although I'm hoping that there are some cool birds hanging around in the parks.

2/19/2009

I and the Bird: 94

A new action packed edition of I and the Bird is now available for your reading enjoyment. Make sure to pop over to Larry's blog: The Birders Report to read all the exciting birding news from around the blogosphere.

2/15/2009

Owl baiting: Your thoughts

Every winter there are discussions that almost inevitable leads to heated arguments around the practice of owl baiting. Owl baiting is the practice of releasing tame rodents such as white mice for wild owls to catch. The practice is generally used by professional photographers to raise their odds of capturing the kill shot up close and personal, especially for rare northern owls such as Snowy, Great Gray and Northern Hawk Owl. Although owl baiting is most common amongst the professional photographer community, members of the public have also got in on the act.

This month I would like to see what your thoughts are on owl baiting. I have a simple survey question running on my blog asking whether you agree with owl baiting or not.

Beyond that I’d like to hear your thoughts on the topic in general. Here are some questions to get your juices flowing:

  • Do you think that owl baiting is the same thing as feeding song birds in your yards?
  • Is it ok to feed the winter owls who have moved from the North due to a lack of food?
  • Do you think that owl baiting habitualizes owls to people?
  • What about the claim that Northern owls are ‘tame/unafraid of people’ to begin with, so interacting with people is not a problem?
  • Would you think less of a fantastic kill shot of a Northern Hawk Owl swooping down if you knew the owl was baited into action?

Below are just a few blog entries, articles and discussion forums dealing with the topic to give you some more backgound on the topic/areas of contention. If you have any other links that you’d like to share or you just want to share your thoughts please click on the Comments link.

Links:
http://www.birddigiscoping.com/2007/02/more-about-baiting-wild-owls.html
http://www.birddigiscoping.com/2006/01/feeding-owls.html
http://photography-on-the.net/forum/archive/index.php/t-58849.html
http://colderbythelakebirding.blogspot.com/2009/01/this-photo-was-taken-on-wednesday.html
http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/723925/0
http://www.mainebirding.net/news/item608


Remember to vote on my poll!