Posted by: atowhee | March 30, 2021


My new owling friend, Brenna, lives in rural southeast Clackamas County, Sometime ago her brother used his cell phone to get these pictures of a Great Gray Owl hunting on her land there.

Here is Brenna’s email about the images: “Here are the pictures of the GGO that was seen on our property. They are not the greatest quality because they were taken on a cell phone. There is a small meadow about 100 feet away from here that he/she was probably hunting in. The red building behind him… is a barn that is usually filled with hay (and mice I am assuming). Do you think this is a young bird? According to the date on the pictures, it looks like the sighting was further back than I remember (November of 2018). Nonetheless, it was amazing to have one on our property and I am hopeful another will show up soon.”

This late in the season it is not easy to tell young from adult. Each juvenile would be largely on its own and fully feathered to the meet the coming winter. This recorded sighting does likely mean that GGOs are nesting somewhere within twenty miles of this property, even within Clackamas County and thus within Portland Metro area. Not many real cities can make that claim!

EBird contains at least five previous GGO sightings listed for Clackamas County–the database doe snot allow specific sites for this species to protect potential nest sites. All sightings in eBird have been in January, February, May and late October. That timing does not necessarily indicate nesting rather than simply hunting in Clackamas. By May mated pairs of GGO are generally on nesting territory but a single immature bird would be hunting solo.


  1. Nice yard bird!

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