SE Colorado Birding

Birding and discussion: A conservation-oriented birding blog that emphasizes low-impact birding and sustainable birding practices together with the enjoyment of birds. Southeast Colorado offers a diversity of habitats which provide premiere birding opportunities. Save Sabal Palm

Friday, April 20, 2007

Cute little Great Horned Owl nestlings

While at the Pueblo Res/State Park checking on the nesting Great Horned Owls I have been following, I was told about a second nest location with nestlings. This owl nest was in the top of a tree that was basically a snag as shown in the bottom pic. As can be seen this tree is near some picnic tables, though they have likely not been used much due to weather not good yet (and its' not an area where I have a lot picnicers before). A trail goes right past this tree but the nestlings stay mostly hidden.

There are two Great Horned Owl nestlings in the top photo. Owl nestlings are just so cute and these fit that rule as they peak around the tree at me. Mom owl was originally in the nest cavity and flew out when I got close inadvertantly (as I didn't see any owls until she flushed). She flew to a nearby tree where she could watch and she emitted several single note calls to the nestlings when I was first taking these photos, presumably telling them to hide (which they did). I moved away so as not to disturb the owls.

Since there are no branches for the nestlings to climb out on as they mature and from which they can learn to fly, I hope they don't become visible to passers-by when they start practicing flying. Nestling and fledgling owls are very vulnerable.

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