Thursday, June 9, 2022

Hoot on the nest...03-31-22 (Photos and video)

 On Thursday, 03-31-22, I walked to the Great Horned Owls area. I took a photo of Give a Hoot before setting up on Hoot, then one more before I left the area.

 I watched Hoot while she was on the nest. Hoot started feeding the owlets for about 25 minutes after Give a Hoot began his calls.

Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Hoot, Nest, Feeding and Owlet 03-30-22 (Photos and video)

On Wednesday, 03-30-22, I went out to spend some time with Hoot, the female, and Give a Hoot,  the male, Great Horned Owls.

When I go out to observe, take photos and video, I will usually spend several hours with them. I’ve been photographing these two owls for over 1 1/2 years and have spent hundreds  of hours with them.

While walking to the area there was some freezing rain/sleet falling. Once I got to the area Give a Hoot (GAH) gave three or four contacts hoots before I got set up on Hoot.

I could see GAH from where I was at so I could see him grooming and stretching. It was about 1730 hrs when I saw him expel a pellet then shortly afterwards he made a couple more contact Hoots.

There was also a turkey about 25 yards from me.

 When GAH started doing more contact hoots, I saw Hoot doing some conversational chitters back to him.

Hoot started to feed the owlets, most likely a rabbit, that was already in the nest. Hoot can be seen ripping apart the prey with her body motions and then feeding the owlets. One of the owlets can be see with its eyes closed with the egg tooth.

Before she was finished feeding she lowered her wing over the owlet and got lower in the nest. When she stopped and looked to my right I looked in the same direction and saw a person coming our direction. Once it was safe for me to move I moved to a position of concealment.  I waited for several minutes before this person came back by the nest before I walked back to the camera.

Hoot continued to watch/listen as this person was nearby. I stayed out with her another half hour. She didn’t resume feeding after this person left the area.

During the half hour afterwards I included a couple short clips of one of the deer that walked to about 10 yards from me. 

Thursday, May 19, 2022

Hoot on the Nest...Glimpse of one owlet (Great Horned Owl) 03-28-22


On Monday, 03-28-22, I went out to spend some time with Hoot, the female Great Horned Owl, while she was on the nest. When I got out there Give a Hoot, the male, was nearby. 
While I was watching Hoot I could see Give a Hoot watching her on the nest. It wasn’t too long before Give a Hoot flew off most likely to go find a rabbit for Hoot and the owlets. I saw the general area where he flew, although I didn’t see if he landed because of the trees.
I went over to see if I could find him to get some photos, but he must of kept flying past where I expected him to be or I just couldn’t locate him. I went back to observe Hoot.
While watching her there were a total of 10 deer that came by me. There was a group of eight, then later on there were two more. You can hear them walking and running in the video. 
Although, there isn’t a lot of activity going on in the nest, but one of the owlets does peek its head out briefly.


Thursday, May 12, 2022

Don't be like this guy....

Michael Furtman, a Minnesota wildlife author and photographer, re-posted a YouTube video in 2017 that Jeff Grotte took of himself baiting a snowy owl with several other people present. Unfortunately, this video appears to be no longer available, but here is a screenshot of what Michael posted about the video.

Click on image to enlarge

Jeff is the same person in my video, Behavior at the Great Horned Owl Nest “Ethical or Not” 04-26-22. Jeff is also the person who started the Owl about Minnesota Facebook group.


After I posted my narrative about my upcoming video, Behavior at the Great Horned Owl Nest “Ethical or Not” 04-26-22.  Jeff said in one of his messages to me,  “I've been photographing owls for 15 years now and have had over a thousand individual owls as subjects. I spend a lot of time in the field and am very practiced at finding owls. Especially Great Horned Owls on nests as they are about the easiest ones to locate.”

Based upon the way that Jeff approached this nest I’m pretty confident its location was pinned. The way he approached the nest wasn’t consistent with someone familiar with the area.

Since I released my video to the public I’ve been contacted by others who told me they had been contacted by Jeff himself asking for locations of other owls and he has given out different owl locations.

On 05-11-22 I was told that Jeff had posted a photo of the male owl in this owl family that I’ve been photographing for over 1 1/2 years on his Owl about Minnesota FB group. This was my second nesting cycle observing, photographing and taking video with these two adults. I don’t know what day the photo was taken. I was provided a screen shot of the male owl that he posted as well as his comment. Although, he only mentioned the park where this owl family is located there was no need to do so. It’s my opinion he was only trying to get back at me for revealing the true person he appears to be while out birding. It appears the photograph is more important thing to him.

I had been a member of Owl about Minnesota until shortly after Jeff appeared in my video. I’ve posted earlier that Jeff told me he removed me from the group that night because he knew I was going to post my video. Although, it’s common knowledge and it’s obvious that several core members in his FB group share the different owl locations between one another. What most of them have in common is that they don’t post the general locations of the owls to the public. One of the exceptions is it’s common to post the general location of the owls that are photographed along the roads in or around the Sax-Zim Bog otherwise its not posted publicly. Giving out a location of a Great Gray Owl or North Hawk Owl along a road is much different than giving out an active Great Horn Owl Nest. If there is too much traffic to the nest it could disrupt the female feeding the owlets.

Don’t be like this guy….