Saturday, 4-19-08 - North Woods Eastern Screech-Owls
The male slept outside today and the female was visible in the cavity most of the day. She let one of the kids have a peak outside at least once during the day.
In the evening, the mother came out early. For the first time, Jean and I were able to see her take a bath in the Loch. My camera was taking pictures of the nestlings, so there are no images. However, take my word for it, we got to watch something simply wonderful. The female got into a shallow portion of the Loch and sat down. She acted like a duck, moving her tail feathers back and forth like Donald Duck in a cartoon. She dipped her head down to get it wet, like a playful Bufflehead. She walked up on shore, rested for a bit and then used her legs to jump as part of her take off from the ground. We watched her dry off and preen, as she moved from tree to tree.
Last Saturday, we had seen her all wet and joked of it as her "Saturday Bath". It seemed funny that when we actually got to see her bathe, it was the next Saturday, as if she knew about our joke!
During her bathing time, the male was attacking a raccoon and feeding the young.
I went away from the evening feeling privileged to have witness so many different owl behaviors over the last few months. And to think this is Central Park, New York City!