Owl Diary: Thursday 1/3

East Owl Moves Up

I happened to be present as the east owl transitioned from its old hiding place in the rip-rap to its new position below the “double tombstone” slab. The owl first hunkered in a hole next to a chopped fennel bush at the top edge of the rip-rap. Then it hopped to the leaning stone slab and stood there with its whole body exposed for a few seconds. Then it settled into the rabbit hole in front of the slab; at first standing, then hunkering down. (See video just below.) In this position, even though it was plainly visible, the bird escaped the notice of most park visitors who passed by. When I had my camera set up on tripod, visitors would first see the owl on screen, and only then go “Ah! Oh! There it is!” Seeing a Burrowing Owl is a learned skill.

The north owl stood in its favorite notch at the water’s edge, mostly in shade, looking dark. At this time of the morning (around 10:45) the bird looked alert and watchful. While I was observing, it held its position without stretching or taking a step.

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