Readers’ wildlife videos

Rick Longworth makes some nice wildlife videos, complete with music, and here’s one featuring a brood of screech owls. His description is indented, and he adds some owl facts:

A pair of western screech owls (Megascops kennicottii) took over my wood duck box this spring. They are small, about 19-25 cm in length. As I reported earlier, the wood ducks came and inspected the box in May but then flew off. I checked the box a few days later and found it had already been taken by the owls. I filmed them every 4 or 5 days to document the development of the chicks. I knew I would have to open the front of the box briefly to film, so I consulted a local owl expert who said the filming should not interfere with the birds. The young are initially pure white fading to brownish-gray. This plumage is replaced with another developing plumage with darker upper parts and light under parts. Streaking and barring develop as the owl matures.

More info about owls here.

Look at those little cotton balls! But they’ll become relentless predators.

 

13 Comments

  1. Debra Coplan
    Posted July 8, 2020 at 8:10 am | Permalink

    That was a fantastic video…great choice of music too.
    I love that scruffy looking juvenile stage they go through before they become adults.
    Great job and thanks for sharing.

    • rickflick
      Posted July 8, 2020 at 8:23 am | Permalink

      Thanks. I was hoping to film their fledging, but they snuck past me.

  2. boudiccadylis
    Posted July 8, 2020 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    Momma didn’t look too happy when you caught her in the box too. It looked like she was manteling her chicks at one point.
    Do you photo the wood ducks in the same manner? Their babies are so cute as opposed to cotton balls.

    • rickflick
      Posted July 8, 2020 at 8:55 am | Permalink

      The owls took the nesting box before the woodys arrived, so the woodys had to look elsewhere. Next spring I hope to have several boxes and a chance to film both species.

  3. Mark
    Posted July 8, 2020 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    Eastern Screech Owls under my patio:

    https://photos.app.goo.gl/BvpKeYk5WFMqXXeR7

    • rickflick
      Posted July 8, 2020 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

      Very similar in appearance to the Western version.

  4. Diana MacPherson
    Posted July 8, 2020 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    Such cute fluffs!

    • rickflick
      Posted July 8, 2020 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

      I was worried they would fall out of the box, poor critters.

      • Mark
        Posted July 8, 2020 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

        When “mine” left the nest I had to rescue several of them. One stranded on the pool skimmer ledge, stuck under the fence, etc.

        • rickflick
          Posted July 8, 2020 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

          Mine were very near a very dense area of brush on a steep slope, so I was unable to find them once they had left the box. I hope they did OK.

  5. merilee
    Posted July 8, 2020 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    Wonderful videos, Rick!

  6. rickflick
    Posted July 8, 2020 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

    Thanks.


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