Saturday, July 25, 2009

why I can't sleep

It's nearly midnight. I've been sick as a dog and I'm exhausted. But, steroid shots = wide awake. I've had a monster case of Strep Throat, and visit #2 to the doctor today resulted in 3 shots. 2 steroid and 1 antibiotic.

So here I sit on the back porch with half a watermelon and a spoon in my lap. It's a yellow meat watermelon. Had one? I grew up on these things. It's comforting. I'm also yearning for ice cream or a Venti iced decaf extra shot skinny latte. Anyone? I'll wait for you to get here.

I could sit out here and rock for hours. I've got all the citronella buckets lit and the new rocker/glider chair is like a drug in itself. There are lots of tree frogs and one very confused Cicada. No owls, just me, the watermelon, and the cicada. Still that's ok. I'm happy here. If I have to be up there's no place I'd rather be.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

humming a new tune

The humming birds are keeping me company since the owl family departure.

Now that I'm not glued to the owl watching chair in the back yard, I can get back to the business of..well..everything else that isn't owl watching. I've been a terribly neglectful Godmother. I missed Madeleine's 3rd birthday, which is borderline criminal since they are living in Turkey where there IS NO shopping mall. Gifts in the mail from Aunt Val are important. I failed. So, I dutifully went shopping today and loaded up on goodies for Madeleine and her brother Lanegan.

In addition to the usual haul of DVDs, tiaras, and clothes, Madeleine is getting ridiculous pink and purple rubber shoes that she will undoubtedly love, and my dearest friend Pamela, her mother, will despise. Muaaahhahhaa. Evil me.

Speaking of tiaras, I have doglet stories. The doglet stories have been on hiatus way too long. She's ready for a come back.

so long, farewell...

Our owlets have taken up roost somewhere beyond where I can see during the day. I hear them at night, and have seen one hunting after dark, but the day watching is definitely over. This may end up being my favorite photo of the whole season. A very satisfying end result to the long season of watching and waiting.

And here's a little video clip of one of the owlets trying out his wings. So sweet and wobbly! It wasn't long after this before they both flew clean out of the yard.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

read in a fortune cookie

Love is a present that can be given every single day you live.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Elvis has left the building.

That's what I'm calling him. Elvis, the larger owlet, and I'll think I'll call the other Costello. They left the nest box sometime between dusk Thursday and dusk Friday. I'm betting it was late Thursday since I was out watching them till around 10pm.

They are roosting way up in the top of our Cypress, so It's been tough to get good pictures during the day. Last night a little after dusk mama owl coaxed them down with food but it was too dark by then to get any pictures. I did enjoy sharing the whole feeding experience with Fred and Joanne, and especially little Elise. She calls them the Portuguese name for owl "mocho" (Fred is Portuguese). Over and over she would say "mocho, whoo whoo". It was very sweet!

I'm a little sad that my nest watching days are over, but very glad they made it.

Credit for the photos in this post go to April. She has been great with her 21 year old eyes in helping me spot the owlets so high up in the tree.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

yes there are two

Tonight I witnessed a shoving match when not one but two heads appeared at one time in the nest box opening. Good to know that sibling rivalry happens in the owl family too. Although I didn't get it in a photo, I can confirm that the owlet has at least one sibling! I got it on video, but I'm having some technical (read amateur) difficulties. Hoping to share that (the video not the difficulty) at some point.

I was able to snap some better pictures this evening. The little ones don't show themselves till right at dusk making it difficult to get a good shot. I don't want to use a flash. Not sure that would be the ethical thing to do since they are fighting off predators for their very lives and all.

I have thoroughly enjoyed the evenings this week watching the young-uns peer from the nest box. I've had to become a little less obtrusive as mother owl has gotten very protective. Up until this week I could walk out and sit right under the branch she was perched on. Now, if I so much as near the edge of our porch she barks at me and makes a close pass swooping in my direction. I'll keep my eyeballs thank you very much. I'm pretty sure she wants to claw them out.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

rainy day backyard bird

owl babies

First sight of our Eastern Screech Owlet! I'm not sure if there is just one or maybe two. Fledging can't be too far away now. I'm thinking in the next day or so.