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Sat Sep 19, 2020, 04:38 PM

Huge owl visited me last night!

I went to bed early (for me) last night because I was depressed. Had my windows open and was awoken at 1:30 a.m. by a loud, long screech. The screeches repeated every three or four minutes and were so loud they echoed through the entire neighboorhood. I knew it had to be some sort of bird and it sounded urgent to me, so I grabbed a flashlight and my #2-son out of bed and we went to investigate. My fear was something was stuck in my window wells again and while I was shining the light down the wells, I heard my son gasp and felt something BIG fly over my head. Ry said it was an owl and that it had flown from the top of our house to the church across the street. I asked my son if it looked like a barn owl, which is pretty common around here and I've seen plenty, but he said the wingspan was way too wide for a barn owl. This afternoon I Googled owl screeches and it sure sounded like a barn owl to me, although they do seem smaller than what flew over us last night. I was hoping it was a great horned owl and that would fit the wingspan, but vocalization isn't right. I'm perplexed.








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Response to Laffy Kat (Original post)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 04:43 PM

1. So cool

I hear owls all the time in my neighborhood, but rarely see one.


Peace

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Response to hibbing (Reply #1)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 04:45 PM

2. I hear hooty-owls all the time, too, but these were screeches! nt

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Response to Laffy Kat (Original post)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 04:48 PM

3. Barred owls are common and can make lots of noises.

The ones in my yard screech, bark, hoot. Can get very noisy in the winter, that is when they are mating and establishing
territory.

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Response to 5X (Reply #3)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 04:54 PM

5. I considered a barred owl, but they seem too small.

I sure do hope it visits again. I want to know!

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Response to Laffy Kat (Reply #5)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 04:56 PM

8. The ones around here are nearly as big as a Great Horned owls just shorter wings.

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Response to 5X (Reply #8)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 05:05 PM

10. Hmmm. Now I'm on a mission.

I wish I could have actually seen it for myself. My son said it flew from rooftop to rooftop and I still felt the wind over my head when it swooshed over, so it had to be big whatever it was.

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Response to Laffy Kat (Original post)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 04:53 PM

4. Owls are cool! I had a huge one that used to come visit me when I was working in the

backyard. He was huge, really huge way up in a tree looking down at me. It used to bother me a tiny bit ... did he see me as a friend, meal or just that afternoons entertainment. He was a hooty one ... could hear him or others in the neighborhood at night. I just did some research ... it was a Great Horned Owl.



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Response to Laffy Kat (Original post)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 04:55 PM

6. We have enormous Great Horned Owls up here. They have realized that all those rabbits that find

most of the homes hospitable, likewise make the neighborhood a great place for them to hang out. Not sure what the competition is between them and the red-tailed hawks that likewise nest nearby, but I think it is the owls that are leaving grisly fresh rabbit remains the past few mornings. The cycle of life and all that, but I am very protective of the wild rabbits that nest under the front of my home and I look out for them. So far, those in my yard tend to remain closeby and I think they know where they are safe.

But yeah, those Great Horned Owls are really large and though they may only be three pounds or so, it has been shown that they can somehow carry up to three times their weight. With a 54-inch wingspan, I cringe when I see neighbors allowing their cats to go outside overnight.

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Response to Laffy Kat (Original post)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 04:55 PM

7. Out at the farm...

Where I spent my whole summer last year, we had a family of owls who did a lot of screeching at this time of year. I thought it was marsh owls but when I finally got a picture of one, it turns out they were Great Horned Owls. So I learned that they also screech loudly when hunting. I was a bit surprised as I have seen and heard a lot of owls, even witnessed a GHO mating call competition in my trees one night.

Could well have been a GHO.

Also, Great Grey Owls screech and are big too.

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Response to 2naSalit (Reply #7)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 04:59 PM

9. Well, that would sure fit better.

Yet all of the vocalizations I'm pulling up on birding sites don't have the GHO screech. I sure WANT it to have been a GHO, LOL.

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Response to Laffy Kat (Reply #9)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 06:13 PM

15. I never thought they did that...

Until I saw it for myself every evening as I was leaving. One even buzzed the screened in porch where we were entertaining visitors one night... it was huge.

I used to have a nesting pair less than twenty feet from my house in Idaho. I never heard the screech until last summer.

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Response to 2naSalit (Reply #7)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 05:14 PM

12. We have a lot of bunnies in my yard.

I think I'm going to set up a game camera. The reason I've hesitated to do so thus far is because I live in an urban area and I don't care too much to see photos and videos of all the featherless bi-peds that may be walking down the alley along my house or the sidewalk. Catching the occasional owl, fox, or cougar (yes, we have them) would certainly be worth it, though.

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Response to Laffy Kat (Original post)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 05:14 PM

11. It was a superb owl, though those usually don't come around until February.

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Response to The Velveteen Ocelot (Reply #11)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 05:15 PM

13. Superb? Gonna look it up. Thanks.

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Response to The Velveteen Ocelot (Reply #11)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 05:16 PM

14. Very funny. Got me.

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Response to Laffy Kat (Original post)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 06:28 PM

16. That was RBG saying goodbye.

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Response to applegrove (Reply #16)

Sat Sep 19, 2020, 06:33 PM

17. It did cheer me up a little.

Even though I'm not spiritual, I did, indeed, find myself assigning a meaning to it when I went back to bed. It's funny what grief does to us.

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