Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Evening of Owls (SWF)

To have the hidden so close,
watch its new life become wild,

though caught for a moment,

the display for me
is more than perfect.
For, in this I see,
it is as it should be.

Owl nest can in evening woods
(far left)

I had the rare privilege to watch a bird-banding at a Great Horned Owl’s nest—a single owlet, several weeks old, within a nest can placed high in the crotch of a Sycamore in a local county park.
An evening I’d anticipated for the week, receiving an email note, earlier, from a friend—watcher of the nest and its occupants.

Sycamore branches and buttons

approaching the nest

And as we waited, watching the progress of man, from ground, to tree, to the nest below its golden branches, inside the can, waited the small owlet--
the prize of the pair nesting here each spring, and those who hope for its successes.

Banding the owlet

Banded and lowered slowly to the ground, it was compared in size and age to another young owl, an orphan hoping to be fostered into this family, raised beside this prize, as the second mouth to feed.

(all photos click to enlarge)

Great Horned Owl owlet #1,
protective display

light on sycamore

Great Horned Owl owlet #2


return to the nest

Then, raised into broad branches, both.
For, it is as it should be.


Thank you, Susan!

See more Skywatch here.

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TSannie said...

This was just wonderful to read and see. Thank you so much for sharing this. And your poem is lovely. I especially like the last 2 lines.

Old Wom Tigley said...

That must have been a thing to see... you certainly got the shots here.. excellent posting for Sky Watch..

Appalachian Lady said...

That's wonderful that you were able to witness the banding. I love the photos of the owl and the sycamore.

Deborah Godin said...

You had the perfect blue backdrop to some really amazing shots! Those little guys sure to know how to look "bad"!

Linda in Erie said...

That must have been an unbelievable experience! The photos are amazing!

karen said...

How utterly amazing! And in a can of all things! You were truly blessed to be able to observe the banding of these little ones and capture such great photos!

bobbie said...

This was so exciting! It must have been wonderful to be there. I hope it is safely adopted into the family.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

We found a Great Horned Owl nest this spring. It was the most flimsy nest I have ever seen for a great big bird. There was only one chick. Our pictures weren't as good as yours but it was an exciting find.

I love the picture of the little owlet making itself look huge. SWEET.

Ginnymo said...

They are so cute!!!! How lucky you are to see these. I've never seen an owl. I don't think there are any living in my woods. I never hear any.

Robin said...

You have the most wonderful experiences. I nearly teared up reading this. May I use, To have the hidden so close,
watch its new life become wild,
though caught for a moment,
the display for me is more than perfect.
For, in this I see,
it is as it should be.

on my blog, giving you immense credit, obviously?


RuthieJ said...

Aren't those baby owls cute? I'm glad you had a chance to attend this event and shared it with us. A very nice story!

Janie said...

Wow, great photos of the young owls. Interesting to see the process of checking on the young ones and banding.
Must have been an exciting experience, and it's fun to share in it through your post.

Larry D said...

Excellent work, the display photo is wonderful. Happy SWF!

Kelly said...

...such a beautiful post of the baby owls and their story. I was there too, but didn't arrive until all the action was over (had just gotten back into town late). I met Susan, and she said I had just missed you!

The Explorer said...

I had a great time looking these photos. I never see an owl so near like in the photos. Thank you so much for this.

Adrienne in Ohio said...

This was a wonderful post full of great photos. I sense your excitement in being there to observe.

Sky said...

wow - what an adventure and how wonderfully lucky i am that you shared it here so i could see some of it, too. thanks much!

Grace and Bradley said...

Must be a very amazing experience. Thanks for sharing.

Babooshka said...

These really are amazing captures.

Diana said...

What a wonderful story - I've seen great horned owl chicks from afar but never close up as you show in your photographs. Thank you so much for sharing.

JOE TODD said...

First time at your blog. Really enjoyed in particular your posts about Olympic National Park. You were able to take the trip pretty much as I had planned it for myself. Then the discount airline and the $10.00 tickets were gone.So my wife and I went to Acadia National Park in Maine with a side trip to the summit of Mt. Washington. Turned out to be a great trip. Some day I hope to make it to Ruby Beach ..Thanks Joe Todd

Barb said...

Thank you for sharing the banding experience with us. Your pictures of the owlets are wonderful. I hope they will fare well.

Arlene said...

These are all beautiful photos of nature. Sycamore tree? Oh i thought that's Zaccheus up there. Glad that the owl is friendly.

Anonymous said...

Ha! Is that an official owl handling helmet!? Great shots however. Those little owl chicks are wonderful.

Mary said...

I'm glad you took advantage of the opportunity. Wonderful!

Endment said...

Awesome post!