Monday, June 30, 2014

A Tale of Two Trailers- Part Two - The Fledgling Owl

This is the second well used cattle trailer on parked on the hill in GriggsDakota. 
Just to the left of its left tire there is a lump. It is not stone, but feathers. 
 I took a trip around to the back of the trailer to see what it looked like. It is a rather large baby owl.
A fledgling Great Horned Owl cannot fly. 
It is none the less, not to be messed with. 
When first startled he tried to intimidate by showing his wings and clicking his beak, but will eventually attack with talons and beak if I don't back off.  
Owls have notoriously poor nest building skills. The mother owl will usually just move into any nest that she finds and begin to lay eggs. Owls are the first birds to nest in our area, often in January. All nests are vacant at that time of year, but the well worn nest does not hold the hatchlings for long. 
It is common to find baby owls on the ground and important to keep your distance. A young owl may ramble around on the ground for weeks, hoping to find enough food to survive. They have the ability to climb several feet up a tree trunk by flapping his wings and using its talons to dig in and climb up the tree trunk. His mother may answer his calls for food. 
For now, he seems to be content to live under and around the old cattle trailer in GriggsDakota.

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