May 30, 2015
Warm (~80F) and extremely muggy and mosquitoey
12:45 pm Male owl bathing in the dish on the back deck, under the noon-day sun! Amazing.
May 7, 2015
AM, T=74, overcast, breezy from south
6:10am, Owlets are in the pecan, as per last night. Did not see much feeding activity, perhaps because it is so leafy and dense that I miss the adult flights. Not hunting in the driveway, at any rate. The fledglings are active, bobbing and hopping and flying from the hackberry to the pecan and back again.
6:30am, at least 3 of the owlets have followed Madame to the west side of the house, rasping in puzzlement as she bathes. This is the first time they have accompanied her, and it will not be long before one adventurous chick decides to try it out. To think they have never had a drink of water since they were hatched….
6:50am, quieting down now. Fledglings are in the pecan, near yesterday’s roost; one parent (the wet one) is up there fluffing and preening. To my surprise the second adult flies up there from where it was apparently hunting, just below my own perch on the shop landing.
May 5, 2015 Cinco de Mayo
AM, weather switch to windy from south and rain to come, T=70
6:10am, youngsters in the pecan; parents are hunting somewhere else today, and deliveries are coming in from over the roof, not the driveway. Does this have to do with the weather change?
6:30am, there is sustained and increased rasping from the owlet branch. Sounds like something bigger and better than a bug or even a gecko. Can’t see, though.
PM, T=83, humid and still windy.
Owlets had their first rainstorm in the open today. Not heavy, but it must be strange to get wet for the first time.
May 4, 2015
AM, T=67, clear and cool
The owlets wake up in the pecan. Watched from the shop steps as the adults hunted in the driveway and in the back yard.
6:20am, one parent is 20’ to my right on a low branch; the other is 20’ to my left on the coil of hose on the side of the house. They don’t seem to mind me at all, so long as I don’t make noise and scare prey.
6:40am, once again a parent owl bathes, twice it is so nice, as the babies get settled down.
PM, T=80, cool weather is coming to an end
the owls remain in the pecan til fed, by 9pm
May 3, 2015
AM, T=68, clear and crisp;
6:30am, the raspers are in both the pecan in back and migrating around the oak over the house. Today they settle on the oak branch right over the roof, closest to the back yard. Once they are in place both parents take turns bathing in the dish on the back deck. Hunting is still in the driveway, skirting around the wakening jay fledglings and parents. Spots are low—low crepe myrtle, fence, even down onto the grass. Must be mostly bugs.
PM, clear, T=79
The pattern is settling in: they roost up high, all together now instead of split up as they were the first night or two. At dusk, 7:30-ish, they start to rasp, then hop to lower branches, eventually into the crepe myrtle, fount of insects.
8pm, have settled tonight in the pecan tree, over the neighbor’s carport. Throughout the night we hear warning hoots from the parents, possibly to ID cats or coons to the owlets.