Showing posts from October, 2013

Baby owls are the best!

A few months ago I had the pleasure of performing Flammulated Owl nest surveys with Hawkwatch International.

Biologists with Hawkwatch International have been creating artificial owl nests for quite a few years now, in order to increase flammulated owl presence in Utah and to decrease predation on fledged chicks. Karri Smith and I, representing Great Salt Lake Audubon, were able to spend a day with the biologists and chicks. Together we performed nest checks in order to inventory young. This involved taking each owlet from the nest, cuddling it, weighing it, and measuring its wing length. Tiny owl puffballs so trustingly slept in our hands while we worked.

We checked over 20 nests, hiking to each site, sneaking up to the nest and blocking the entrance with a pole-and-baseball-cap device in order to trap the mother and place a radio tracker on her, and carefully inspected each baby owl to make sure all were healthy and growing. Sunshine, pine trees, and wildflowers made up our work…