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Long-eared Owl

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  • Matthew Matthiessen
    Decided to get an early start on my Superbowl celebrations this morning (Sun Feb 3) by doing some owling up Low Gap Rd. It was rather foggy but still ended up
    Message 1 of 10 , Feb 3, 2002
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      Decided to get an early start on my Superbowl celebrations this morning
      (Sun Feb 3) by doing some owling up Low Gap Rd. It was rather foggy but
      still ended up being a productive morning. Best bird was a LONG-EARED
      OWL at 1.5 miles above Pine Ridge Rd (all mileages will be from Pine
      Ridge Rd). Unfortunately the bird only called three times.
      Surprisingly, the first owl of the morning was a NORTHERN SAW-WHET OWL I
      coaxed into responding to my whistles (1.0 mile). As is often the case
      with saw-whets, it took a while to get started, but once warmed up there
      was no stopping it. I think it was still calling as I drove away. Had
      my first WESTERN SCREETCH-OWL at 1.5 miles (with the LEOW). At 1.7
      miles I had another NSWO and WESO). At 2.5 miles I heard my one and
      only NORTHERN PYGMY-OWL. The morning was capped off with a PILEATED
      WOODPECKER calling just below the gap shortly after dawn (not an owl but
      we'll still count it).

      Good Owling
      Matthew Matthiessen
    • Matthew Matthiessen
      Last night (Wed Feb 27) a group went back out to Montgomery Woods for the Barred Owl. Again we had success at the Kellieowen Grove. On the drive back to
      Message 2 of 10 , Feb 28, 2002
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        Last night (Wed Feb 27) a group went back out to Montgomery Woods for
        the Barred Owl. Again we had success at the Kellieowen Grove. On the
        drive back to Ukiah, George Chaniot, Ollie Kolkman, and I had a
        LONG-EARED OWL at mm 37.02 (this mm is only visible when driving east)
        along Orr Springs Rd. The bird was perched on a reflective marker
        beside the road and flew up when we drove by. We stopped and backed up
        and got a longer look at the bird still perched on a marker. After a
        few seconds it flew down the hill to the south and out of sight. We got
        out and played a tape but got no response.

        - Matthew Matthiessen
      • chaniot@pacific.net
        Sorry for the late posting Wed, 26 Jan 2005, 5:55-6:15 PM -- At dusk this evening I was walking along West Road near my home in Potter Valley. I heard what
        Message 3 of 10 , Jan 28, 2005
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          Sorry for the late posting

          Wed, 26 Jan 2005, 5:55-6:15 PM -- At dusk this evening I was walking along
          West Road near my home in Potter Valley. I heard what sounded like a
          LONG-EARED OWL hooting from the ridge to the west. So I hopped a fence and
          trespassed across a field for about a quarter mile for a better listen. I
          wanted to make sure that it wasn't the bellowing of cattle, which can be
          pretty similar at times in pitch, duration, and quality and at the same
          time of day. The owl moved closer in response to my imitation, and we were
          separated at about 300 yards. I could not entice it to fly into the nearest
          oak for a visual where it would have been silhouetted in the last light of
          the evening, but I did hear about 15 hoots at good range over a twenty
          minute period. It was a clear, still evening. This is a Long Overdue Bird
          (LOB) for me here in Potter Valley. I know of one other record

          Thu, 27 Jan 2005 -- I went back to the same place at the same hour to
          listen again, but I did not hear any owl. This evening was windy with low
          clouds rolling by and the beginning of sprinkles. Unlike last night the
          chorus of Pacific Chorus Frogs was deafening.

          George Chaniot
          Potter Valley, MEN, CA
        • chaniot@pacific.net
          Sat, 24 Dec 2005 -- I heard two hoots from a Long-eared Owl this evening from West Road in Potter Valley about 1/4 mile north of my home. The time was 17:37 -
          Message 4 of 10 , Dec 24, 2005
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            Sat, 24 Dec 2005 -- I heard two hoots from a Long-eared Owl this evening
            from West Road in Potter Valley about 1/4 mile north of my home. The time
            was 17:37 - just about when all the light was gone from the sky. This was
            exactly the same place on the western ridge that I heard one calling back
            in January.

            George Chaniot
            Potter Valley, MEN, CA
          • Bob Keiffer
            Sunday - 29 June 2008 - Last week a UC researcher reported to me that she & fellow surveyors believed that they had several young Long-eared Owls respond
            Message 5 of 10 , Jun 29, 2008
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              Sunday - 29 June 2008 - Last week a UC researcher reported to me that she & fellow surveyors believed that they had several young Long-eared Owls respond during their night-time surveys on adjacent property to the UC Hopland Research & Extension Center. I played a Cornell tape of juvenile Long-eared Owls for her and she thought was identical to what they had heard. Tonight I ventured out to the vicinity of where they had heard the reponses. I arrived at around 9:20 PM at a side road on the UC Hopland REC ...which bisected open grassland and the dense hardwood forest where they had heard the earlier responses. I sat quietly on the tailgate of my pickup as I prepared the tape caller and spotlight. During this time I thought I heard a strange bark-like owl call about 100 yards away in the dense forest. I proceeded to call the typical Long-eared owl "hoot" call for about a minute. After waiting a few minutes I called again with just a few hoot notes ....and waited again. The third time that I called I saw the silhouette of an owl fly in from the direction that I had heard the earlier bark-like call ...and it alighted in a tree about 60 feet away from me. I turned the tape caller down low and proceeded to play the tape again while I had the spotlight ready. Within a couple notes of playing the owl left its perch and flew directly over me ...at which time I flipped the spotlight on the bird which was 25 feet directly over my head. It circled two complete tight circles directly over me in grand light ....I could see the orangish facial disks, the vertical streaks on the breast, the dark "coma" marks on the underwing "wrists", the "barn owl" size as compared to huge size that a Great Horned Owl would be. There was no doubt .... an adult Long-eared Owl. The owl flew back to the direction that it came ....I turned the light off as it disappeared about 250 feet away. Good birding! Bob Keiffer

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            • Robert J. Keiffer
              Tuesday - 1 July 2008 - Chuck Vaughn & I met with several other birders to pursue the Long-eared Owl that I posted on Monday. We arrived at the site shortly
              Message 6 of 10 , Jul 2, 2008
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                Tuesday - 1 July 2008 - Chuck Vaughn & I met with several other
                birders to pursue the Long-eared Owl that I posted on Monday. We
                arrived at the site shortly after 9:00 PM. Even before I had the
                caller equipment set up, at around 9:15 PM, two Long-eared Owls flew
                out from the hardwood grove and flew about over the open grassy
                field, sometimes flying overhead. One of the owls lighted in a dead
                oak for about one minute ....one could see short ear tufts through
                binoculars. I believe that this was an immature bird ...but I cannot
                be sure. We never did hear them vocalize, but they put on quite a
                display for a couple of minutes. Later a Barn Owl flew over the same
                grassy field ...it had much faster wingbeats than the LEOWs ...and of
                course was very light on the underneath side as compared to the
                LEOWs. Good birding. Bob Keiffer


                Robert J. Keiffer
                Principal Supt. of Agriculture
                UC Hopland Research & Extension Center
                4070 University Road
                Hopland, CA 95449
                (707) 744-1424 FAX (707) 744-1040
                HREC website: http://danrrec.ucdavis.edu/hopland/home_page.html

                "It is not the critic who counts... not the one who points out how
                the strong person stumbles... or where the doer of deeds could have
                done better. The credit belongs to the person who is actually in the
                arena." Theodore Roosevelt

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              • Bob Keiffer
                Friday - 4 July 2008 - The family of Long-eared Owls discovered at the UC-Hopland Research & Extension Center has now moved about a half-mile from the original
                Message 7 of 10 , Jul 5, 2008
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                  Friday - 4 July 2008 - The family of Long-eared Owls discovered at the UC-Hopland Research & Extension Center has now moved about a half-mile from the original site. This is good news to those who wish to pursue this species as the new site is right along University Road ...which is a county road with access to everyone. For the last two nights the family group of three or four fledged young plus at least one adult has been at this location. To get there, go to Hopland on Hwy 101, then east on Hwy 175 to a small community called "Old Hopland" (there is no sign). As you pass through this little community you will reach a round-a-bout on Highway 175 ...head north onto Old River Road. Go about 200 yards and University Road will be on your right (east side). Follow University Road ....you will pass irrigated pasture on your left and vineyard on your right, then cross a cattleguard and pass an old barn on your left. Continue on University Road as you begin to climb a fairly steep grade. As you climb the grade the road makes a sharp turn to the right, then makes another jog-turn to the right, and then you will see a large pullout on your right. At this point you are almost at the top of the grade climb. Below this pullout, which is to the south, is a small pocket canyon of thick oaks, pepperwoods, etc. BE THERE AT DUSK, by 9:00 PM, and listen quietly for the juvenile calls, a high pitched, single note "eeeeckkk" (identical to the Cornell juv. long-eared owl recording). Last night all of the juveniles were very vocal, and could be seen flying through the trees occasionally. We were able to get one good look at a perched bird. One adult was there for a while but then flew to the north and away, I presume to hunt for nightime snacks to bring back to the young. Good birding. Bob Keiffer

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                • Robert J. Keiffer
                  13 January 2009 - Tuesday - Chuck Vaughn & I checked on the Long-eared Owls this morning and only found one bird in the pepperwood roost tree. Why both birds
                  Message 8 of 10 , Jan 13, 2009
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                    13 January 2009 - Tuesday - Chuck Vaughn & I checked on the
                    Long-eared Owls this morning and only found one bird in the
                    pepperwood roost tree. Why both birds were not there today I cannot
                    explain as they seemed quite settled in yesterday as I left them. The
                    bird today was much more scittish than yesterday and flushed as I
                    attempted to get a good photo. I will try to monitor the tree from a
                    distance in the future. Good birding. Bob Keiffer

                    Robert J. Keiffer
                    Principal Supt. of Agriculture
                    UC Hopland Research & Extension Center
                    4070 University Road
                    Hopland, CA 95449
                    (707) 744-1424 FAX (707) 744-1040
                    HREC website: http://danrrec.ucdavis.edu/hopland/home_page.html

                    "It is not the critic who counts... not the one who points out how
                    the strong person stumbles... or where the doer of deeds could have
                    done better. The credit belongs to the person who is actually in the
                    arena." Theodore Roosevelt

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                  • George Chaniot
                    Wed, 25 Aug 2010 -- I was awakened at 03:30 this morning by what sounded like a group of geese calling in the moonlight. I went out on the deck to listen and
                    Message 9 of 10 , Aug 25, 2010
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                      Wed, 25 Aug 2010 -- I was awakened at 03:30 this morning by what sounded
                      like a group of geese calling in the moonlight. I went out on the deck to
                      listen and instead I heard a LONG-EARED OWL calling about 150 yards away.
                      It called four times in 15 minutes, or about once every five minutes. This
                      was my third encounter here in 31 years. I never did figure out the goose
                      thing - maybe a very distant group of coyotes yapping.

                      George Chaniot
                      Potter Valley, MEN, CA
                    • Robert Keiffer
                      21 November 2012 - This morning, while awake but still in bed (Feliz Creek Road, one mile west of Hopland), I was surprised by the typical long hoot calls of a
                      Message 10 of 10 , Nov 21, 2012
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                        21 November 2012 - This morning, while awake but still in bed (Feliz Creek Road, one mile west of Hopland), I was surprised by the typical long hoot calls of a LONG-EARED OWL. At first I was thinking Northern Saw-whet Owl or vehicle backup alarm, but careful listening clarified the monotonous long-low hoots of the long-eared owl. The calling started at 5:17 AM and stopped abruptly at 5:20 AM. The nighttime rains had stopped and the skies were filled with stars at the time ...soon to be covered by thick fog. I could not pinpoint the exact location, but I believe it was coming from an oak-covered small ridge with many7 grassy openings about 1/8 mile away.

                        Good birding. Bob Keiffer rjkeiffer@...<mailto:rjkeiffer@...>

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                        Robert J. Keiffer - Superintendent
                        UC ANR, Hopland Research & Extension Center
                        4070 University Rd.
                        Hopland, CA 95449
                        707-744-1424 ext. 112
                        Office hours: Monday-Friday 8:00-5:00

                        Please check out our Website: http://ucanr.org/sites/hopland/
                        Also, take a look at our blog (updated daily): http://ucanr.org/blogs/Hopland/index.cfm



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