Thursday, March 25, 2021

Hoot and her Two Owlets 03-24-21

On Wednesday, 03-24-21, I went out to check on Hoot, the female Great Horned Owl, and her two owlets after the last two days of rain. When I got to the area I took my daily photo of her looking all wet, then I set up my tripod with camera for some video and photos. I would spend the next 3 hours observing her different behaviors.

I watched one of the owlets for awhile moving in and out of Hoot’s breast feathers before the second owlet finally popped its head out. I’ve enjoyed watching Hoots interactions with her owlets, she’s so gentle with them.

Today I was able to video the older owlet being fed a complete vole/mouse. The owlet swallowed it whole. It needed to stop a few times, but it finally got it completely down. Then Hoot reached into another part of the nest and got another vole/mouse. This time she ripped it into smaller pieces to feed it to the smaller, younger owlet. There was a slightly larger piece left at the end and the older owlet grabbed it and ate it , too.

Hoot flew off the nest at 1800 hrs. I just turned off the video at 1829 hrs because I was going to leave just when Hoot arrived back at the nest, so I missed her landing. I turned the video back on and you can hear her making some soft sounds to her owlets while Give a Hoot, the male, is calling in the distance.

Hoot settled back into the nest and the owlets once again got between her legs and underneath her breast feathers. Pretty soon there isn’t going to be enough room up in the nest for all three.

Hoot normally will leave the nest around sunset, but it’s not unusual for her to leave early, either. Due to all the rain she might not have left the nest for a couple days because of the constant rain. I don’t believe she came back with any food this time.

Once Hoot was back on the nest I caught a glimpse of Give a Hoot leaving his perch about 5 minutes later and about 30 yards further away from the nest. I decided to pack up my gear and head out. I figured Hoot might be leaving the nest again in about an hour or so closer to sunset or Give a Hoot would be dropping off the first round of food and then continue throughout the night. 


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