Second Owl

Burrowing Owl (Athene cunicularia)

I returned to the park near 5 pm mainly to post the owl notices on the fence, see below. Along the way I checked on the owl I saw this morning, and it was still there, as if it had not moved at all. Then as I approached the main part of the seasonal Burrowing Owl Sanctuary, a gentleman who gave his name as Joze said there was an owl right there on the surface in plain view. I confess I was skeptical. Two owls in a day is very rare, and I fully expected to see one of those common furry owls with ears and bushy tails. But no. Joze was absolutely right. There in the central circle of the area, where the big stone sits, near a Coyote Bush, in a small pit in the ground, perched a real feathered earless tailless Burrowing Owl. No doubt about it.

This bird sat closer to the fence and its human and canine traffic than any other owl in recent memory. Not surprisingly, it swiveled its head often and rapidly. This was a bird on medium or high alert, not a relaxed bird like the one I saw this morning. I do not have high expectations that it will remain in this spot very long. Within a few minutes I encountered three dog owners with their dogs off leash. One of them promptly leashed her dog. The other two just kept walking. I telephoned Berkeley Animal Care and left a message asking for a show of enforcement tomorrow. It is a federal crime to harass or disturb these birds. It would be good if Animal Care were to be present.

Burrowing Owl (Athene cunicularia)

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3 thoughts on “Second Owl

  • How rapidly the owl’s pupil(s) contract / dilate when a shadow passes across their view, e.g., at 22 secs and esp. several times all within sec. 33 !

  • This is great news! Hope the 2nd Owl and the first stay!
    Thank you for the news! (As for the dog owners, I am sad to say the majority do not care.)

  • So glad the owl(s) have returned!!

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