Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Progression of Boo the owlet

 (from 2014 owl nesting season)
We are all amazed at how fast Boo is progressing in growth and reaching the index as owlets goes. Boo's eyes are open and pin feathers are presently growing on both wings, we see just a hint left of the eye tooth used to break out of the shell.
Boo was able to gulp down his/her's own little frog at 7 days of age.  

We were all surprised when Dad jumped into the nesting box while Mrs B was out on a flyabout and try to hand off a crayfish to Boo to eat. It was one of those "Cuteness overload" moments. Both Mr.B and Mrs B are doing a wonderful job caring for baby Boo

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Friday, January 31, 2014

Happy Birthday

Its been confirmed at approximately 09:57 this morning we saw mom pick up the broken egg shell, move it then start eating the shell. WE HAVE A FULL HATCH!!! About 8 minutes later we got a nice round of Who Cooks For You from Dad then Mom. A beautiful morning with no rain at the nest.

What is Semialtricial?? 
Most classifications come with refinements. Birds considered altricial but with slight differences are also labeled semialtricial. Semialtricial birds hatch with down-covered bodies but need to be fed and can't leave the nest. Owls are called semialtricial-2 since the babies are born with down but eyes closed.

Mrs B will remain with Boo for about 3 weeks, while the male Mr B. hunts and takes prey to the nest to feed both.. Boo's eyes will open at about 7 days old and Boo may be ready to leave the nest at or about 4 - 5 weeks of age, when the owlet will crawl out of the nest using the beak and talons to sit on adjoining branches (at this stage they are often referred to as "branchers"). Owlets start flying when they are six weeks old. The parents will continue to feed until the young reach independence at about 6 months old.

Our first peek of the owlet Boo

Monday, December 30, 2013

Welcome back Mr. & Mrs B

Welcome back to our 2014 nesting season. Its been a long summer waiting for Mr. & Mrs B to return to begin another family of owlets.

Our first egg has been spotted in the nest on 12/30/13. Eggs are likely laid every 2 to 3 days and incubation begins with the first egg laid. Incubation period is 28-33 days. Barred owls usually lay 1-4 eggs. The Male brings food to the female while she is on the nest. The Barred Owl is single-brooded (1 clutch per yr) but has a long breeding season, which allows for laying of replacement clutches if the first clutch or brood is lost.

Hunting & Food: A very opportunistic hunter, a Barred Owl can sometimes be seen hunting before dark. This typically occurs during the nesting season or on dark and cloudy days. A Barred Owl will use a perch, from where it dives upon its prey - meadow voles are its main prey, followed by shrews and deer mice. Other mammals include rats, squirrels, young rabbits, bats, moles, opossums, mink, and weasels. Birds are taken occasionally, including woodpeckers, grouse, quail, jays, blackbirds, and pigeons. They also eats small fish, turtles, frogs, snakes, lizards, crayfish, scorpions, beetles, crickets, and grasshoppers. Birds are taken as they settle into nocturnal roosts, because they cannot catch birds on the wing. They will also swoop down to the water's edge to catch frogs, other amphibians, and occasionally fish. Barred Owls are attracted to campfires and lights where they forage for large insects. Prey is usually devoured on the spot. Larger prey is carried to a feeding perch and torn apart before eating.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Gromit the explorer branches

 Gromit branched late this afternoon jumping or flapping like a pro. He tried several times climbing back up the tree and then plop - back down to the ground.

 Gromit explored the forest ground in search for a place to hide or looking for Wallace or a parent

Not to worry, Mom or Dad was keeping a close eye on Gromit down below.

We wish both Wallace and Gromit a safe good life as owlets on the verge of flying and full fledge.

A fond farewell as our cameras turned off, tears were shed among the many viewers who have grown to love our precious Mr. & Mrs B and their adorable clutch Wallace and Gromit..

Special thanks goes out to OwlGuy for bringing the cameras to us viewers and to his many well informed moderators who gave us all an education about barred owls.

See you next January...