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….

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