2023 has been a year for owls. We had Great-horned Owls courting early in the year, their booming calls adding a sense of mystery to an encroaching twilight.
The Great-horned Owls appeared to have a single fledgling, whose clumsy attempts at hunting brought it into constant attack from Bluejays, Grackles, and Mockingbirds. We could tell when owls were close, as the clamor of songbirds circled and dive-bombed their perch.
And once again, a family of Screech Owls occupied our nest box; this time, three owlets kept their mother busy. She would call in the afternoons and evenings, her hollow trill presumably calling in her mate. The fledglings left abruptly in early May. We hope they found dense cover for their protection from the Great-horned Owls that take up posts at the back of our property nearly every evening.
Mother Screech Owl kept a close watch on her brood. As they grew and became more curious and restless, she took up a perch in a nearby pine, ready to intervene if any of her fledglings were at risk.
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