Wednesday, February 18, 2009

No Short-eared Owls (yet) - 17 Feb 2009

For the past several weeks I've been wondering if any Short-eared Owls are roosting at Pt. Mouillee. Since I haven't heard of any reports, I decided to take a walk after work along the Middle Causeway up to the junction of Long Pond, Vermet and Lead Units.

The Long Pond corn fields are hosting hundreds of Canada Geese, Mallard and a few Tundra Swans. The Vermet Unit still has a large flock of Gadwall (see my last post), and the Lead Unit is mostly iced over, still.
Sitting in the grass alongside the dike I hunkered down between 4:30 and 6:00 pm and just watched and listen to the sights and sounds of the thawing marsh around me. All was quiet save for the occasional fly-by Canada Goose or Ring-billed Gull.
I managed to see a couple of Bald Eagles pass by and grab a shot or two in the setting skies. One eagle even made a half-lazy sweep of the Gadwall colony to scare the flock into the air, but didn't chase anything.

As the sun disappeared behind the Flat Rock Quarry and things got dark, I grabbed my stuff and headed back to the car. No owls! Not even a Northern Harrier! I did see several small flocks of Red-winged Blackbirds flying east toward the Vermet Unit phragmites, though, so that was nice.

I'll try again in another week or so...

Note: Eagle pic is a composite image.



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