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August 28, 2014

Dad and Second Oldest Juvenile Return

The male parent returns in the evening of August 27 to spend some time in the box tweeting, dancing, preening and listening to the noises outside. In the morning of August 28 the second oldest juvenile pops in for a quick scratch around the box. The young owls' first attempts to capture live prey is a great move towards independence. Before they started to make their first hunting attempts (which they may be doing now) they would have been sitting around relying entirely on the adults to bring them food, even after leaving the confines of the nest box. As we are hearing the young occasionally through the night and one returns to the box, it appears the owls are staying within the vicinity of the nest site. They may be making short flights and roosting elsewhere but are still considering the nest box as a base which they associate with food. In September they are likely to start wandering further and may chase after their parents, possibly for food. As their confidence grows they will move further and by October will likely lose the association with the nest.  

August 27, 2014

The Parents Return

The parents return once more with the absence of a juvenile in the nest box during the daylight hours of August 26. The male visits the box 4 times through the night and the female returns only once, during the male's first visit. We are able to hear a variety of chirrups, twitters and squeaks between the parents (they give each other little squeaks and chirrups when looking at one another). We also hear a continued twitter when the male is alone in the box. The male may be giving the characteristic acknowledgement or self-advertising call to the female. The behavior is thought to signal excitement and is seen as a friendly recognition, the males attention seeking notes may serve to preserve their pair bond.  

August 27, 2014

Could the Fledglings Start Fishing Soon?

Iris and Stan continue to deliver fish to the juveniles. As previously mentioned this family is part of a migratory population, located in the northern state of Montana, this means we would expect that the young would remain dependent on parental feeding for at least 10-20 days after first flights. The first osprey fledged August 6! 

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