Posted by: atowhee | September 14, 2016


Here’s today’s email from Mel the Owl Man in Jackson County.  Two hunting owls in the Cascades east of Ashland.

“I had a good owl search today [Tuesday]. I headed up the hill a little earlier than usual. I arrived at Mile Post 19 about three minutes before the car behind me. The MP 19 GGO was on the south fence line. I was able to snap a couple of “documentary” shots before the car behind raced by spooking the owl into the tree line. A few minutes later the GGO made a grounding in the meadow (I don’t believe it was successful) then a truck whizzing by spooking the owl passed the southern tree line.

I headed along the usual circuit and happened to come upon a second GGO in a meadow. The GGO was sleeping when I first spotted it but came to life about 20 minutes later. For the next four hours, I observed and photographed as the GGO moved from listening post to listening post. The GGO did eight groundings during the four hours and was successful on the third grounding. (She may had been successful on another grounding, but I could not tell for sure because of the grass). After about 3 1/2 hours, she flew to a listening post within 45 feet of me (and finally in sunlight). She stayed there for only a few minutes then flew back into the shadows.
Within a few minutes the owl flew across the road (no higher than 18 inches above the road pavement and landed on the east side fence line near the springs. I took a few photos of the GGO on the fence line. It was a couple from Corvallis hoping to see a GGO. I waved them up and they were able to see the GGO before it went into the timber. They were pretty excited about their “life bird” sighting.
This owl was a bit unusual as to the length of time it spent before moving to a new listening post. My past experience is about every five to fifteen minutes seeing them change posts. This GGO would spent upwards of a half an hour before moving. Only once did I catch the GGO sneaking a short nap. The owl stayed active looking around and as it in has been the past, the owl wasn’t interested in looking at the photographer.
A wonderful Tuesday!
Here are Mel Clements’ pictures from yesterday:091316-037_edited-1 091316-054_edited-1 091316-059_edited-1
Friday I head with a group of birders from Ash;and birders to Malheur.  We will stay away from the gunmen who still haunt the county and threaten workers at the wildlife refuge.  The situation is tense during the current trail of the occupiers.


Medford, OR.  September 20th.  I will give a talk about the Great Gray Owl and sign books.
6PM.  Wild Birds Unlimited, 961 Medford Court in the Medford Center off Biddle Road.

McMinnville, OR.   October 6th.  I will talk about birding hotspots along Interstate 5 in Oregon and places to look for the Great Gray Owl.  I will sign copies of both FREEWAY BIRDING and GREAT GRAY OWL books.  6:30 PM, Third Street Books, 320 NE Third Street, McMinnville.

McMinnville, OR.  October 20 and 27.  Birding upper Willamette Valley in winter.  A class sponsored by McMinnville Park & Rec Department.  Lectures on Thursday night, 630pm.  Field trips on Saturdays, October 22 and 29.

Register on line or at community center:

Salem, OR.  November 8.  The Great Gray Owl, a talk at Salem Audubon Birders’ Night. Birder’s Night: a presentation on various aspects of birding, followed by an informal sharing of bird observations and questions. Meets at 6:30 p.m. on the second Tuesday of the month, September through May, at the Carrier Room of the First United Methodist Church, 600 State Street in downtown Salem.



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