Yellowstone Reports

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Owl Studies

This year might turn out ok
by Dan Hartman

March 26, 2019

     My owl study continues, which is good as this time last year I had already given up. 

     It's been a strange winter.  Mild for the first two thirds, and then a killer finish.  How would that affect the owl population?

     Early in the month, I was off to a slow start.  Geting 2-3 boreal songs a night wasn't promising.  But one thing that gave me hope was the number of boreals calling.  By the 20th Cindy and I had identified 11 or 12 individual owls.  Problem is they weren't singing often.  We might get 3 one night and then 3 different ones the next night.  If it had been the same 3 different ones the next night, I would say it's going to be a bad year.  But with the number we have calling there is hope.

     After a bad night, (no calls), on the 20th, the super moon night, we took a couple nights off.

     On the 23rd we heard 5 songs, a high for the month.  Even going out in a mini blizzard on the 24th we still got 3 songs, and last night Cindy and I heard 4.

     I think in the next week we could get 8 to 9 in a single night.  That being said, there's a forecast that predicts up to 24 inches of snow later this week.

     A pygmy owl has been tooting every afternoon below the cabin.

     Cindy and I ventured north to check out a couple horned owl nests we found last year and discovered both were occupied.


View slide show

Super Moon

Pygmy Owl

Great Horned Owl Nest

Great Horned Owl Nest