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97753 owl evening

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  • kozma.jeff
    Jan 25, 2014
      Hi Yakkers,

      I left early from work on Friday and took the long way home by going down Lateral C.  In the fields southwest of Marion Drain Road I saw 3 species of owls.  First were two Great Horned Owls (GHOW) that I could hear duet hooting back and forth in the distance.  Immediately after that, I saw 2 Short-eared Owls (SEOW) that were doing displays in the air with each other and calling frequently.  I eventually started watching one more closely as it started to hunt the open field for small mammals.  As I was watching it, it all of a sudden started more powered flight so I followed it with my binocs and eventually it made it to a GHOW that was sitting on one of the wheels of the irrigation pipe at the back of the field.  The SEOW began dive-bombing and harassing the GHOW and after about 10 minutes, the GHOW, obviously not getting any hunting done, gave up and left the field.  The SEOW went back to hunting and I watched it catch a vole (or other small mammal) pretty close to me.  It was cool to see it all of a sudden pounce and nab its victim. As the light began to fade to a point of me almost calling it a night, I heard a Barn Owl give its screech call and I eventually found it foraging further south on Lat C but in the same field.  

      I dipped on the Sandhill Crane, although there were 3 Great Blue Herons in the  field with the cows.  I can't complain though seeing (and not just hearing) 3 different species of owls!  If you haven't had a chance, I recommend heading down Lat C in the evening and watch the owls. With it being so still with no wind, it is very easy to hear them vocalizing as well as watch them.

      Jeff Kozma