Archivos de diario de mayo 2020

17 de mayo de 2020

Eastern screech-owl nesting behavior

We put up a nest box for eastern screech-owls on December 26, 2006, and owls moved in sometime in January 2007. We've seen them almost continuously ever since, and they use it for roosting when they aren't nesting. As you can see in the photos, it's made out of a piece of hollow log. It's a little bit bigger than most commercially available screech-owl boxes that are made from cedar boards, and I think they like it better. If you're going to put up a screech-owl nest box, make sure it's big enough.

Left photo: Screech-owl with a black rat on April 10, 2011 (iNat #20941573).

Center photo: Screech-owl with part of a bird on April 14, 2019, possibly a white-winged dove (iNat #22938371). At the same time, the male was perched about 15 yds away in a loquat tree.

Right photo: Screech-owl with part of a bird on April 21, 2020 (iNat #42818949). At the same time, the male was perched about 10 yards away on a limb of the same plateau live oak that the nest box was in.

These three photos show a screech-owl just perched in the entrance and holding a prey item. Is this typical behavior? I believe it is the female of the pair in all three cases that is holding the prey. Only the female eastern screech-owl incubates, the average incubation time is 30 days, and the average nestling period in central Texas is 28 days (Ritchison et al. 2020 Birds of the World species account). When we photographed the owl with prey on April 21, 2020, we thought she had been incubating for about the last month. We think the owls fledged on May 5, 2020, because we saw the nestlings a lot up to that date, but not after (see iNat #45656028 and 46286608). Is holding a prey item at the entrance to the nest box some kind of birth announcement?

Publicado el mayo 17, 2020 08:17 TARDE por cliftonladd cliftonladd | 11 observaciones | 3 comentarios | Deja un comentario