Summary of Tawny Owl Season 2009

Tawny Owls and all the others
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HelenD
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Joined: March 1st, 2009, 3:18 am
Location: Surrey, British Columbia, Canada - 49th Parallel

Summary of Tawny Owl Season 2009

Post by HelenD » June 24th, 2009, 11:11 am

THE ESTONIAN TAWNY OWL ENGLISH FORUM (Strix aluco)

http://www.loodeskalander.ee

(Summarized by: Helen Darbyshire, Surrey, BC, Canada – June 20 2009)

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

The forum opened on February 7 2009 and for the purposes of this summary, June 6 2009 is the date of the last post. There were 3325 posts in total, and 39,565 views. Forum users from 18 countries posted to the forum, and named the parent owls Klaara and Klaus. The first egg was observed on March 01 2009, and by March 11 2009 there were a total of 5 eggs. On March 22 2009, an egg was stolen by a pine marten. The first egg hatched on April 04 2009 and by April 06 2009 all the eggs had hatched. The first owlet left the nest on May 05 2009 and by May 09 2009 the nest was empty.

GENERAL OBSERVATIONS
The location of the nest was in a tree next to a road, and traffic noise was often evident. One forum user captured an image of two joggers running along the road. Occasionally, people could be heard talking.
As the forum users got to know one another, there was a tendency to go off-topic. One issue that drew much discussion was that of the nature photographer who disturbed Klaara in her nest so he could take photographs.
There were also occasional issues with the camera and/or sound going off, but this was always rectified within a few hours. Forum users posted hundreds of photographs, which soon led to a shortage of storage space on the server. In an effort to alleviate this, the Forum Administrator asked users to post thumbnail photographs, or link to an external photo-hosting site. It is noted many users post with an identifying photograph (generally a bird or an animal), and some have lengthy signature blocks.
Numerous birds visited the nest entrance and the following were observed/captured on screen shots: Woodpecker, Nuthatch, Tit, Starling, Blackbird. A spider also built a web at one point, partially obscuring the camera. One time, a passing cat was caught by a forum watcher.

Consensus was Klaara was bigger than Klaus and she had lighter markings, that she had a bigger facial disc and a flower pattern of dark feathers on her face; the owls were often difficult to distinguish when they visited the nest by themselves. There were many postings documenting the owls calling to each other, of food drops, and Klaara grooming. Klaara would often leave the nest when Klaus called.
There were some weather observations, namely rain, snow and wind.
After the first egg was laid, Klaara would often leave the nest to hunt. It was not until all five eggs were laid that she began to incubate them.
Once the owlets had hatched, Klaara and Klaus turned into prodigious hunters, and the nest was often littered with dead rodents. One screen shot showed 3 mouse/rat tails. Both parents dropped off prey, and sometimes both visited the young at the same time. One night, 19 food drops were observed. Food seemed to consist of mice, rats, voles, birds and frogs. It was noted both owls looked after the chicks, Klaaus often coming to the nest when Klaara was out, and occasionally both owls were in the nest together.

Forum users were from the following countries:
Estonia Russia Czech Republic England Germany Denmark
Netherlands Finland Canada Austria Poland Portugal
Lithuania Scotland France Hungary Sweden
USA (Massachusetts, Texas, California, Oregon)
Helen

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HelenD
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Posts: 204
Joined: March 1st, 2009, 3:18 am
Location: Surrey, British Columbia, Canada - 49th Parallel

Post by HelenD » June 24th, 2009, 11:35 am

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Helen

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HelenD
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Joined: March 1st, 2009, 3:18 am
Location: Surrey, British Columbia, Canada - 49th Parallel

Post by HelenD » June 24th, 2009, 11:37 am

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Helen

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