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Native Californian, biologist, wildlife conservation consultant, retired Smithsonian scientist, father of two daughters, grandfather of 4 small primates. INTJ. Believes nature is infinitely more interesting than shopping malls. Born 100 years too late.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Ne me quitte pas

Despite my best intentions, the screech owl flew the coop. I checked the camera trap today. My rude intrusion was just too much.

This picture was taken at 5:17PM on the same day of my owl debacle. There were two photos of the owl. Obviously it was ready to "get the hell out of Dodge". That was it.

Knowing that the owl was gone, I checked out the box. I had been right. The bad smell was from squirrels. There were bones and baby squirrel fur in the box. Something must have bumped off the mother. No barf balls were to be found.

I find it curious that the owls ignore the flash when they are nesting. The camera trap took hundreds of flash photos last spring when a pair of screech owls nested in a tree cavity not far from here. It seems that once committed, they stick it out despite the camera flash.

It's a let down. The owl box (sigh) is close enough to the house for an owl cam, and I was ready to set one up courtesy of neighbor Richard who loaned the equipment.

I'm not giving up. I went to the hardware store this afternoon. It's time to build some more owl boxes.


Anonymous said...

Ne *me* quitte pas


Camera Trap Codger said...

Thanks, anon. I know it only from the Jacques Brel version.

Owlman said...

The Screech owl saga is very amusing as well as interesting.
I sure hope he returns but he may not feel very secure after the earlier "Owl debacle" experience.
hoo knows he(she?) may well return.

Owlman said...

Don't give up. Mid March is approaching and most owl boxes are vacant. Once Mid-March arrives we will tell whether we are in business!